Review: Best Behavior by Wendy Francis


Release date: May 5, 2020

Publisher: Graydon House

Genre: Contemporary Fiction


A modern-day family gathers for a weekend to remember in a novel rich in both humor and heart…

Meredith Parker has made the journey to Bolton, her twins’ college, dozens of times. This weekend, though, is different. Dawn and Cody are about to graduate and move away to separate corners of the country. Meredith is proud of her kids, and she’s proud of herself for helping them get this far. She just never expected the tidal wave of emotions sweeping over her—or the tangled family dynamics complicating everything.

Meredith doesn’t miss her cheating ex, Roger, one bit, but sitting across from his very young, very gorgeous second wife threatens to unravel the graceful facade she’s trying so hard to maintain. Joel, Meredith’s husband, can see she’s feeling the first pangs of empty-nest syndrome and wants to soften the blow—but he’s distracted by a familiar face. Meanwhile, Cody and Dawn are sitting on their own secrets, and Roger’s new wife, Lily, wonders if she really wants to be a part of this wild, mixed-up family.

As tensions simmer with each passing appetizer tray, Meredith’s vision of the perfect weekend goes up in flames. But before the party’s over, as best behavior gives way to brutal honesty, there’ll be a chance for this new blended family to truly come together—in all its messy and glorious imperfection. 


There’s something about summer approaching that makes me want to read about family drama and when a blended family gets together over one long weekend for a college graduation you just know drama will be at the forefront. You have exes and parents of the graduates, Meredith and Roger and then both of their spouses as well as the kids themselves. Blended families are never easy and when there are secrets and lies floating around things get pretty juicy.

While my own kids are nowhere near college graduation age I still found Meredith to be relatable in the way she worries about her children, does a mother’s anxiety ever decrease even when her kids are full fledged adults? I don’t think so. The ensemble cast of characters were quite the lively and quirky bunch, they were all fun and authentic, they type of people you would encounter in your own life. Add in some scandals, a beautiful New England setting, sharp wit and a light mystery and this is a great summer read!

Overall rating: 4/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.

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