My Favorite Mistake, Downtown Press (New York, NY), 2004.
Exes and Ohs, Downtown Press (New York, NY), 2005.
Fashionably Late, Downtown Press (New York, NY), 2006.
Contributor to books, including In One Year and Out the Other, Downtown Press (New York, NY), 2004; and Flirting with Pride & Prejudice, Benbella Books (Dallas, TX), 2005.
THE "310" SERIES; YOUNG ADULT NOVELS; UNDER PSEUDONYM BETH KILLIAN
Life As a Poser, MTV Books (New York, NY), 2006.
Everything She Wants, MTV Books (New York, NY), 2006.
WORK IN PROGRESS: Nearlyweds, a novel.
SIDELIGHTS: In an interview posted on the Romance Junkies Web site, novelist Beth Kendrick commented on the best piece of writing advice she had ever received: "Reading is a collaborative act. You can't control how every single reader and critic will respond to your work." Kendrick continued, "You have to be true to your own vision and your own voice and if you do that, you have nothing to apologize for."
Kendrick published her first novel, My Favorite Mistake, in 2004. In the story, food writer Faith Geary must return to her small hometown in Minnesota when she learns that her sister's husband has left her for another woman. At the same time, the town bar that Faith co-owns is going bankrupt. Faith, who vowed when she left home ten years ago that she would never return, is reluctant to go until her former lover, Patrick Flynn, calls and tells Faith that her sister, Skye, is pregnant. When Faith arrives, she unexpectedly finds that she still has feelings for Patrick, who has been angry with her ever since she turned down his long-ago marriage proposal. Many critics remarked upon Kendrick's use of humor in the novel. Indeed, Sabrina Marino, in a review posted on the Best Reviews Web site, noted that the author "entertains readers with this humorous story that proves it's never too late to make good on a mistake," while Harriet Klausner, in a review posted on AllReaders.com, felt that "the story line is often amusing but contains a serious undertone about actual responsibility for one's actions." Additionally, Reviewer's Bookwatch critic Melissa Brown Levine observed that "Kendrick's work is fluid, the action moves at a steady tempo, holding the reader's interest." Levine concluded that My Favorite Mistake is "fun, genuine, and fulfilling."
Kendrick followed My Favorite Mistake with Exes and Ohs. The novel tells of child psychologist Gwen Traynor, whose fiancée broke up with her the night of their wedding rehearsal dinner. Gwen then falls in love with a man named Alex Coughlin, and their relationship is going well until Gwen realizes that one of her clients, a four-year-old boy named Leo, is Alex's son, whom Alex fathered with a soap-opera actress named Harmony. Gwen next begins dating a police officer, but she realizes that he is also one of Harmony's ex-boyfriends. At the same time, Gwen's ex-fiancée is trying to win her back. This raucous plot was applauded by many reviewers. Writing this time on the Best Reviews Web site, Klausner pointed out that the book is "part satire mixed with a serious message" and stated that the book is a "fabulous relationship comedic-drama that will grip the audience." On the other hand, a Curled Up with a Good Book Web site critic felt that "there is nothing new or spectacular covered" in the novel, and that it is "average with a few shining moments." Regardless, Booklist reviewer Aleksandra Kostovski claimed that "this entertaining novel will have readers believing anything can happen."
In 2006 Kendrick published Fashionably Late. The novel's protagonist, Becca Davis, refuses her boyfriend's proposal, quits her job in Phoenix, Arizona, and moves to Los Angeles, California, to pursue her dream of starting her own clothing line. Becca, who has always lived a safe, comfortable life, is convinced by her two older sisters to make the change. However, Becca discovers that making a name for herself in the design business isn't as easy as she anticipated. Once again, reviewers praised the novel. In a review posted on the Curled Up with a Good Book Web site, a critic remarked that "Kendrick takes a tried-and-true chick lit formula and spices it up with humor and a heartfelt story," A Publishers Weekly reviewer agreed with this assessment, noting the author's "kitschy, cat-scratchy banter" as well as the "happily-ever-after close." Ultimately, John Charles, writing in Booklist, called the book "an impeccable and irresistible combination of wickedly clever writing and sharply defined characters."
Kendrick is also the author of young adult novels in the "310" series; these books are published under the pseudonym Beth Killian.
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, February 15, 2005, Aleksandra Kostovski, review of Exes and Ohs, p. 1061; November 15, 2005, John Charles, review of Fashionably Late, p. 31.
Publishers Weekly, December 19, 2005, review of Fashionably Late, p. 41.
Reviewer's Bookwatch, January, 2005, Melissa Brown Levine, review of My Favorite Mistake.
AllReaders.com, http://www.allreaders.com/ (April 20, 2006), Harriet Klausner, review of My Favorite Mistake.
Best Reviews, http://thebestreviews.com/ (July 10, 2004), Sabrina Marino, review of My Favorite Mistake; (March 19, 2005), Harriet Klausner, review of Exes and Ohs.
Beth Kendrick Home Page, http://www.bethkendrick.com (April 20, 2006).
Beth Killian Home Page, http://www.bethkillian.com (April 20, 2006).
Curled Up with a Good Book, http://www.curledup.com/ (April 20, 2006), review of Exes and Ohs; (April 20, 2006) review of Fashionably Late.
Romance Junkies, http://www.romancejunkies.com/ (April 20, 2006), interview with author.