The Diann Hunt File:
Reviewed by Sheryl Root
Hot Tropics and Cold Feet by
"Diann Hunt takes characters that could be stereotypical and makes them real and relatable."
What happens when four women travel to sunny Florida—three of them intent on a secret mission to persuade their friend to go through with her upcoming wedding? You get Hot Tropics and Cold Feet, a funny and poignant novel by author Diann Hunt.
Those who have read Hot Flashes and Cold Cream will already be familiar with the Latte Girls Club—Maggie, Lily, Louise & Jill. If you haven’t yet read Diann’s previous novel, don’t worry. It won’t take you long to be pulled into the wonderful and wacky world of Maggie and her friends.
Captain, Lily’s fiancé, is getting worried. He senses Lily has cold feet about their wedding, so he entreats Maggie’s help. Captain suggests a girl’s get away might be just what Lily needs, and Maggie is quick to agree. So they put a plan into place. The girls will travel to the perfect vacation spot—Jill’s condo in sunny Siesta Key. And the icing on the cake? Donny Osmond, Maggie’s singing idol, is having a concert in Siesta Key during their vacation time. Maggie is sure she’ll be able to meet him. However, while plans to meet Donny never completely leave Maggie’s mind, her friends begin to occupy her thoughts more and more. Evidently, Lily’s not the only one who needs the support of her friends. Jill and Louise seem to have it all together, but living in such close quarters makes it very clear that they both have some problems of their own to work out.
Diann Hunt takes characters that could be stereotypical and makes them real and relatable—friends you will recognize. Maggie, in the middle of menopause and the hot flashes, extra pounds, and wrinkles that seem to come with it, is hilariously outspoken. Lily, widowed several years and now engaged to a wonderful man, has been Maggie’s best friend since first grade. Louise, the perfect homemaker, is a great cook and always looks beautiful. Jill, the nutrition and exercise fanatic, does knee bends before she sits down to dinner and walks around the lake every morning. While Maggie loves all of her friends, she’d be much happier if only Louise would get a wrinkle, Jill would eat some chocolate, and Lily would come to realize that Captain is the perfect man for her!
All the Latte Girls are married (or about to be) and their husbands, while having a less prominent role in this story, are written with realism and humor. Diann communicates the give and take of marriage perfectly. Maggie & her husband Gordon’s relationship especially touched me—they have the kind of marriage I would hope for.
I found myself with tears in my eyes more than once while reading Hot Tropics. Tears of laughter—the scene with Maggie buried up to her neck on the beach is not to be missed—and tears of sadness when the women go through pain. You don’t need to be a wife or a mom to relate to these uniquely female friendships. The snippets of back-story from Hot Flashes and Cold Cream make me eager to read it sometime soon. If you’re looking for a book that will move you both to laughter and to tears, Hot Tropics and Cold Feet is for you!
Sheryl Root is Partner Database Manager at OneHope, a non-profit organization whose mission is to reach every child with God’s Word. She’s also a writer and a reader of everything she can get her hands on … books, blogs, magazines. In other words, she’s both a data geek and a book nerd. She loves to be able to support Christian authors and spread the word on great books and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, a wonderful community of published and yet to be published writers. You can follow her on Twitter at @Sheryl_Root.