Charlotte and Nell are sisters. Charlotte lives outside of London, and Nell has recently moved to Canada. The two sisters keep in touch via e-mail and phone conversations, sharing their everyday lives as well as their heartaches and joys just as if they lived right next door. Although separated by the ocean, Charlotte and Nell are each otherís sounding boards when it comes to parenting and other issues involving life as a wife and mother. Pets, neighbors, friendships, remodeling, relatives, and marriage are issues they bounce off each other daily. Can they remain sane even when the whole world seems to be completely off its rocker and out of control?
The title of And God Created the Au Pair is a bit deceptive. Itís not about being an au pair. While one of the sisters does employ an au pair, itís not a central plot point. Authors Benedicte Newland and Pascale Smets are themselves sisters who live across the ocean from one another and write a column for the London Times called "Disp@tches from the Home Front," which has now been turned into this novel. The realism shines through in every e-mail message. By the end of the book I felt like these women were my friends, and I wanted to join in with their conversationsóI truly didnít want the book to end.
There is nothing earth-shattering or spectacular about the plot. But the everyday exploits of wives and mothers will appeal to those who are experiencing this stage of life themselves. There are many laugh-out-loud moments, the humor perfectly balancing some of the more melancholy portions. If you enjoy mom-lit, And God Created the Au Pair is a fantastic choice ó and easily read in small sections while balancing a busy life.