In another parallel with Ephron (whose penultimate book was titled I Feel Bad About My Neck), Quindlen, now 60, addresses the vagaries of the aging process in the entry titled “Mirror, Mirror,” as she talks about "that moment when someone at a bar or liquor store cards you—because it's their policy to card everyone—and your heart soars," or beginning her "annual pilgrimage to the Fountain of Botox, later supplemented with one to the Shrine of Facial Fillers." But it's a process the writer is very much at peace with: "I wouldn't be twenty-five again on a bet, or even forty." More simply, she sums it up with, "I just like this time better."
Other highlights: “Faith,” about ambivalent feelings towards her Catholic upbringing (“’I’ve thought about my faith so often as I’ve grown older, and I admit that I’m not certain what I really believe about any of it anymore”); and “Mortality,” an inevitable contemplation of what may lie at the end of the journey.
Ultimately, the heart of the book is perhaps best summarized in that famous lyric from rock poet (and boomer hero) Bob Dylan: "But I was so much older then / I’m younger than that now." It’s no surprise that this totally engaging and savvily self-aware volume would conclude with a chapter called, "To Be Continued."
Bring on more candles.