Jennifer's Reviews > Whacked

Whacked by Jules Asner
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Apr 26, 10

Read in March, 2010

2 Words that describe the book: Dating horror

3 Settings where it took place or characters you met:

1. Setting: Los Angeles, CA

2. Dani Hale—A writer for a TV crime show who has a passion for forensics, Dani is on the brink of success both professionally and personally. Not only does she have her first sole writing credit, but she suspects her boyfriend Dave might be getting ready to propose.

3. Dave—A director (mostly on TV shows), he's been Dani's boyfriend for a few years. Although she's convinced a proposal is near, Dave has not quite been the perfect boyfriend—a fact that Dani is about to discover when she starts to do a little snooping into Dave's life.

4 Things you liked and/or disliked about it:

1. I disliked how Dani acts throughout the book. She is forever hacking into e-mail accounts, answering machines, snooping in drawers and doing other things that are desperate, underhanded and just plain creepy.

2. I disliked how I was unsure whether this book was a supposed to be a satire of dating, a condemnation of Los Angeles, dark humor, or all of the above. I didn't think it succeeded at being ANY of these (and I'm not someone who shies away from dark humor). I didn't think this book worked at any level. Although I suspect Jules Asner probably knows this subject matter having been a model, an E! TV personality and the wife of director Steven Soderbergh, I didn't think the book was fun, wicked, clever or even well-written. If this book offers a true depiction of the LA lifestyle and dating scene, I feel sorry for everyone who lives there. For me, the only true "fun" of the book was seeing Asner drop names of real celebrities, but these fleeting moments are hardly worth slogging through the book.

3. I disliked Dani. She was a very unsympathetic character (as were pretty much all of the characters in the book). I started out tolerating her, then I started to dislike her, and, by the end, I flat-out loathed her.

4. I disliked the book. Did you pick up on that? I don't know why I was surprised at the ending. I guess I should have seen it coming, but I really hated the choices that Asner made with it. If nothing else, I wanted Dani to get her comeuppance.

5 Stars or less for your rating?

I'm giving the book 2 stars. Perhaps I'm taking the book too seriously, but I really don't think I am. I went into it expecting a fun, frothy read, but I didn't have fun reading it. And if this was meant to be a satire or condemnation of L.A. and its dating scene, I don't think it worked. The writing was just OK; it had a very mechanical and clunky feel to it.
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