Karla's Reviews > Why We Broke Up

Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler
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's review
May 22, 2012

it was ok
bookshelves: read-in-2012, reviewed, and-then-it-went-downhill
Read from May 21 to 22, 2012

I have a lot of things to say about this book, but I'll start with the good stuff. First, the cover: It was minimalistic, classy and apt. I like how fresh it looks compared with other book covers that have modelesque boys and girls on the center. Second, the artwork: I am now a fan of Maira Kalman. Her use of bright colors contrast beautifully with the story: it adds a little bit of chirpiness to the otherwise depressing breakup suffered by the protagonist, Min. And third, the story premise: Presumably original, the concept was interesting and a bit of a reprieve from all the books depicting teenagers as lust-driven creatures. If you want a book with the girl appearing smarter than her boyfriend, or a teenage couple actually having a conversation, then this is for you.

The bad thing is, I didn't like the whole book. The characters are one-dimensional and poorly developed. Do not expect to learn anything about Min's girl friends and Ed's mother; apparently, they don't matter much in the story, even though they are always mentioned. The dialogues are also repetitive, and often times full of references to old movies no one knows and cares... and it got annoying. Apparently, they can be angsty and emo, but not talk like normal teenagers. And the breakup was a bit laughable, that I wanted to tell Min, "See what happens when you WORSHIP your boyfriend?"

And the run-on sentences! They are endless, it made me want to scream. By page 55, I gave up and rested my liquefied brain. It hurt to understand those sentences, so consider yourself warned.

All in all, it was a mildly enjoyable read (if you get past through the bleeping run-on sentences and overabundance of angst). It could have been much, much better.

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Reading Progress

05/21/2012 page 55
16.0% "The abundance of run-on sentences is so... I can't even... It takes an awful lot of willpower not to scream my head off from the frustration."

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