Book Review | The Kicking The Bucket List

kicking the bucket

Meet the daughters of Iris Parker. Dee; sensitive and big-hearted; Rose uptight and controlled and Fleur the reckless free spirit.

At the reading of their mother’s will, the three estranged women are aghast to discover that their inheritance comes with strings attached. If they are to inherit her wealth, they must spend a series of weekends together over the course of a year and carry out their mother’s ‘bucket list’.

But one year doesn’t seem like nearly enough time for them to move past the decades-old layers of squabbles and misunderstandings. Can they grow up for once and see that Iris’ bucket list was about so much more than money…

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Grief is like standing on the edge of the ocean. Some days, the water laps around your feet; you know it’s there, it’s manageable. Other days, from nowhere, it blasts in like a tsunami and knocks you right over. They say it takes two years to ever feel normal again.

When their mother dies Rose, Dee and Fleur get a bit of a surprise. Before they can claim their inheritance they have to complete her “kicking the bucket list”. In an effort to try and bring her estranged daughters’ closer together and to teach them a bit about what’s important in life, Iris has left them a series of things that they need to do over the course of a year. The catch…if one of them drops out then no one gets the inheritance; will they manage to stick it out?

This book has a brilliant storyline; I was engrossed within a few pages. I think it is a really original way to deal with the subject of grief, it is, of course, a sad situation but the tasks that Iris sends them on gives the book a good dose of humor and more of a cheerful feeling than a morose one. I also liked that whilst the money was a factor in the story, it was actually more about bringing the sisters closer together and them being able to share these moments with their mother after she had passed.

The story is mostly narrated from Dee’s point of view, I think it was good that she was the main voice of the story because she often felt like the mediator between her sisters, so it felt like you were getting the most unbiased version of events. There are some parts that are told from Rose and Fleur’s perspectives and I liked that these were included because you got to see into the background of all the characters and it also makes it clear how much they assume about each other.

The only thing that I will say in way of criticism is that it would have been nice to hear a little more from Fleur, it might just be me but I felt that I didn’t get as much in depth with Fleur as I did with Rose. Her segments appeared a lot more surface and anything of more substance about her seemed to come from Dee.

I really enjoyed the relationship between Rose, Dee, and Fleur, when Dee had errant thoughts about her sisters or when she thought one of them was saying things to be hurtful, these were things that I could relate to (I’m sure plenty of people would as well). Their actions felt realistic, perhaps occasionally immature, but that’s not to say that age means maturity and there were plenty of occasions when I was reminded of ways that my sister and I have acted towards one another when someone’s been annoyed or upset.

It was wonderful to see how these relationships evolved and that they gradually started getting a little bit more in sync with each other. It was especially interesting as they were all really different personality wise, so their approaches to the tasks and situations caused some friction between them, which added to the fun.

I definitely went through a range of emotions reading this book and in my case, that usually means I have been wholly invested in it. It had me giggling one minute and in tears the next. This is a really enjoyable book; it’s easy to read and deals with a subject that many of us have experience of with a bit of humor and a different outlook. It makes you think about what happiness is and that life is too short not to pursue it.



Thank you to Harper Collins and Netgalley for the review copy of this book.


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