Finishing Touches Review
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Finishing Touches is an endearing story of three best friends from college. The main character of the story is Jesse, the average one of the trio. Jesse wears normal clothes, has trouble with men, and majors in art. Cecile is the upbeat, fun party girl who has the looks, attire, and the personality to match. Bryn is the exotic of the three. She’s the Russian model-type who becomes a lawyer and marries well to boot.

The story begins with Jesse and Cecile playing a game of tennis. Afterwards, Jesse meets up with Bryn for an afternoon chat session to finalize the plans for Cecile’s wedding. While Jesse and Bryn are enjoying their afternoon, Jesse receives a call from Zach, Cecile’s fiancée, who informs the girls that Cecile was in a terrible car accident. Bryn and Jesse rush to the hospital and end up taking turns spending days and weeks there, waiting for Cecile to recover. As the date of the wedding approaches, Zach requests that the girls help him go through with the wedding at the hospital. But two days after the hospital wedding, Cecile suddenly dies. The group mourns their loss together.

In the weeks following Cecile’s death, Cecile’s parents invite Bryn and Jesse to a luncheon where they hand the girls envelopes with a portion of inheritance from Cecile’s trust fund. Cecile had made it her wish to leave each of her best friends $50,000, with the remainder of her trust going to Zach, her husband. The group, now with its new mix—Bryn and husband, Zach the widower, and Jesse the single party girl—undergoes a strange alteration. Zach and Jesse begin to spend more time together, and they eventually end up dating. At first Bryn pretends to accept their relationship, but as time passes, she begins to resent Jesse dating Zach.

The story is filled with Jesse’s internal emotions about Zach. Does she really love him? Is it just that she wants to have and be everything that Cecile was? Is this just a relationship of convenience? Jesse struggles with all these issues and ends up finding herself, her niche in life, and true happiness.

Finishing Touches is a moving story of dealing with an unexpected death—and the change in friendships as we grow. Deanna Kizis’s storytelling is compelling, and it will have you turning pages to get more.

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