My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Fifty Million Reasons is the thirteenth book of Heather Wardell’s Toronto Series. This is the first book from that author that I read. I don’t know if her other books are related but as far as my reading experience goes, I can say that this one is written so it can be a standalone.
In Fifty Million Reasons we meet Angela, a single young woman living in Toronto with her bonsai trees. No she’s not a creepy lady, it’s just that her trees as much as they are a hobby, they are important to her, they’re her roommates! Her life is fine and you might say normal. She loves her family and friends and she enjoys doing random acts of kindness without expecting anything in return.
Maybe it was her lucky bonsai trees or life trying to reward her for her good deeds or just plain old luck but Angela scored big winning the lottery. She won 50 million dollars!
Such a huge sum of money is life-changing. But Angela’s first thought was that her new financial status was not going to change her. She knew her life was set and that now she would finally be able to help her friends and family without any trouble. Or so she thought.
Winning the lottery takes Angela on a journey to discover the truth about the people in her life. The lottery is an eye-opener for Angela and she gets to know who really loves and respects her. At the same time, she finds out that she is surrounded by “hungry locusts”: opportunistic, disgusting, selfish people that don’t care about anything but getting money from her no matter what. Some want the money for valid reasons but others just want to get a scoop out of her winnings just because they think they’re entitled to since she has enough to share with the “world”. She even ends up in the middle of a lawsuit because of this!
Despite all the bad, she was lucky enough to discover her true friends and find new ones. She gets great financial advice on how to spend her money: “paws off the principal”. Advice that I might take in consideration to apply not to my multimillionaire lottery earnings but to my regular not millionaire paychecks.
Angela is great at managing her money. She spends it without going overboard, her shopping sprees are justified, and she always kept in mind that the money wasn’t going to change her. She does a good job sharing her money with her family, close friends and strangers in need. She even kept her word and shared with someone who didn’t deserve it. (I know I wouldn’t have given this person a penny.) But as you read in the story, it was the only way to get this person off her life and be happy. I was afraid for a bit that she was starting to over share, without thinking of her future, but in the end she did what she had to do, what her conscience told her was the right thing.
There’s a love story in the middle of this. Predictable, because you know who she’s going to end up with from the get go, but the twists and turns that occur until her happily ever after surprised me.
I always talk about the cover first, but for this book, if I did I would give away too much. So that’s why I left if till the end. The cover by Scarlett Rugers Design is a very nice cover. An intriguing one. At first glance, it might seem inane. You’d think the lovely bonsai tree doesn’t tell you much about the story. But once you read the book you understand. At least what I got from the cover is that Angela’s life was like a bonsai tree. She was getting nowhere if she stayed like she was. Winning the lottery made her realize that she had to do some careful and serious pruning to her life so it could really grow in the happy and right direction forever, surrounded by the people who love and appreciate her sincerely.
I liked this story and being that it belongs to a series, I might as well check the rest of the books out in the future. Besides, they’re based in Canada, a country that I would love to visit someday, but in the meantime, my dreams will have to do with my book travels through Heather Wardell’s writing.
Fifty Million Reasons is a fast-paced book, with relatable characters and current events that keep you entertained and interested. It’s a good book about friendships regardless the person’s age, family values, greed, generosity and love. It could be a nice easy read for book clubs, a side read or a book in between long intense ones. It’s a book that makes you ponder and definitely leaves you thinking about what you would do if you won 50 million dollars.
- Inanely: adjective. Lacking significance, meaning or point.
- Seething: adjective. To be excited or emotionally stirred up with anger.
- Adamant: adjective. Not willing to change an opinion or decision : very determined.
…I still strongly recommend that you don’t touch the principal for at least six months. You can spend a bit of the interest, or in fact all of it if you want, but paws off the principal.
I’ve sometimes felt this way:
The glow of what I’d done was still tarnished for me by how much I hadn’t done.
My favorite line in this book. Must remember this and not be afraid to say this one word sentence when I feel like it:
Remember, ‘no’ is a complete sentence.