**spoiler alert** Sometimes I struggle with giving books the proper star rating, because it's difficult to sum up one's opinion in a number of stars....more**spoiler alert** Sometimes I struggle with giving books the proper star rating, because it's difficult to sum up one's opinion in a number of stars.
I finally settled on two stars with this book, because in all honesty, I didn't like this book very much but I won't give a book 1 star unless it's terrible. But my struggle is this: the book was extremely well-done - I just didn't like it. Seems unfair to give it two stars, but there you have it. I did.
This book was well-written and well-researched by a very notable author. But I found it cumbersome and frustrating to read. Because the characters are intellectuals/emo/soul-searchers struggling to find themselves (and jobs) after college in the 80s, the author talks a LOT about all of the various authors and works they've read and analyzed... And I didn't have a clue who most of them were.
I've read Jane Austen and (believe it or not) Thomas A Kempis, and that's where my overlapping list ends. I consider myself a reader, but trying to read about all these philosophical and intellectual writers was a little bit like trying to get through the who-begot-whoms in the Old Testament - zzzzzzzz...
I guess the fact that none of the characters was much of a protagonist really bothered me. One character comes close, but his epiphany doesn't happen until the very last few pages of the book, which is incredibly frustrating for the reader. There's a whole lot of build up for nothing.
I enjoyed Madeline's character the most, and I would have liked to see more of a change from her. After the trials and tribulations she faced in the dominant relationship in the book, I would have thought she learned something. But I really didn't get the impression that she did. If she did, the reader doesn't see a whole lot of it except for a glimmer of it on her honeymoon.
If nothing else, this book is a great example of smart girls doing stupid shit when it comes to love.(less)
I won The Last Letter From Your Lover in a GoodReads First Reads giveaway.
This novel depicts a young woman's struggle with her marriage during the 196...moreI won The Last Letter From Your Lover in a GoodReads First Reads giveaway.
This novel depicts a young woman's struggle with her marriage during the 1960s when divorce was taboo and society rules dictated that women be seen and not heard. This novel also depicts a young woman in the present day who struggles with her relationship with a married man and her job at a newspaper, which she is at risk of losing.
I got a little lost in this novel, not because it was confusing, but because the voice changed throughout. I really enjoyed the story of Jennifer Stirling, and I think that particular storyline could have been a good book all on its own. But the author threw in Ellie's story along with it, which was not quite as strong. The story was a little flimsy and we spent less time with the character development in Ellie's portion of the book, so it was much harder for me to empathize with her. The voice of the book changed dramatically when we got to Ellie's story. It felt like two different writers wrote the stories and tried to find a way to tie them together.
I would have done something a little different with this novel if I were editing it. The storyline of Ellie is brought in much too late in the story. Once I finished reading the first couple sections about Jennifer Stirling, I was so engaged in her story that it was jarring to launch me into a completely different and NEW story. The writer could have done one of two things here: Either forget about Ellie and just tell the story of Jennifer Stirling, OR begin the book with Ellie and pepper the flashbacks to the 1960s throughout so that the reader and Ellie discover Jennifer's story together. This would make the stories much more integrated.
I think there's a lot of good stuff here, but the book needs some work to achieve its full potential.
Wow, I did not like this book at all. I picked it up because a few of the fashion people I follow in Twitter recommended it as a good "beach read," bu...moreWow, I did not like this book at all. I picked it up because a few of the fashion people I follow in Twitter recommended it as a good "beach read," but I wouldn't recommend it.
For starters, the book was poorly edited. I don't know if that's because I was reading it on my Kindle or if the print version is the same, but there were so many grammatical errors that it was distracting. Additionally, I think the editor could have provided better direction in terms of the content of the story. The flashbacks sort of jumped around a bit, so it was hard to tell when we were done with the flashback and back to the regular narrative.
I also had a lot of trouble relating the main character. She seems incredibly stuck-up and self-centered and can't seem to compromise with others at all. As part of the story, this selfishness gets even worse, which I understood was meant to happen. However, I couldn't relate to any of it. I couldn't emotionally connect with the character in order to empathize with her situation, and I was surprised at how easily she made some of the bigger life-changing decisions without blinking an eye.
I was hoping this would be some brain candy for the summertime, but I think I need to be more careful when selecting my brain candy books. (less)
Wow. I have not had a book hold my attention in this way in such a long time. I was skeptical of this book, because I typically steer clear of the "Yo...moreWow. I have not had a book hold my attention in this way in such a long time. I was skeptical of this book, because I typically steer clear of the "Young Adult" genre. However, at the recommendation of a friend, I decided to pick this one up and I'm so glad I did. So. Good. Read it now.(less)
I absolutely loved this book. It took me less than 2 days to read it, because I couldn't put it down.
I think part of the reason I enjoyed it so much i...moreI absolutely loved this book. It took me less than 2 days to read it, because I couldn't put it down.
I think part of the reason I enjoyed it so much is because I, for whatever reason, was in a mindset that allowed me to appreciate it whether I agreed with everything she said, or not.
I first tried to pick up this book right after I broke up with a man I had dated for almost five years, and at that time I couldn't stomach it. The wounds of my relationship were too new to be contemplating the history and purpose of marriage. However, many months later, I was eager to delve into the anecdotes of marriage around the world and the ever-persistent question of WHY we get married?
Gilbert says some very interesting things in this book that made me think about the "consequences" of marriage and what it means to be married. The answer? It's different for everyone. :)(less)
**spoiler alert** I'm a little behind on the bandwagon since the book AND movie have both come and gone, but I finally got around to reading this and...more**spoiler alert** I'm a little behind on the bandwagon since the book AND movie have both come and gone, but I finally got around to reading this and WOW. The story was incredibly well-written and I loved that it was told from (almost) everyone's different perspectives as we moved through the story.
Since I read this after all the hype, I thought I knew what to expect. The book is sad, one of the sisters is dying of leukemia, family tragedy, blah blah blah. And as I kept reading, I thought the story is sad, but it hasn't dissolved me to tears yet.
The last 15 pages or so took a turn for the sappy and I melted into a puddle of tears on the couch - what I was expecting to happen did NOT happen at all, and the ending took me by emotional surprise. Well done, Jodi Picoult for fooling me into thinking I knew what to expect.(less)