Ally's Reviews > Maybe This Time: A Novel

Maybe This Time by Jennifer Crusie
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's review
Mar 01, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: legit-romance-novels, ghosts, gothic
Read from March 01 to 02, 2012

Not so much a romance novel, as an excellent novel with a side of romance.

Written in response to the author's fascination with Turn of the Screw, by Henry James, the novel tackles the story in it's own very individual way.

Those who've never read James' novel will be drawn in by the intriguing ghost story, and questions of sanity. Those familiar with it will recognize key scenes, and the ways in which they've changed.

Of course, that isn't to say this should be read as high literature. It's very accessible, and very funny. The characters are lively and vibrant; Alice and Carter are probably the best and most realistic children I've seen in fiction. They are interesting, but bratty, and exasperating, and difficult.

The slow development of their relationship to Andie, the main character, is very well handled. Too often in romance novel, a woman instantly falls in love with the perfect angelic children she encounters. That isn't the case here, she slowly comes to know them and wins them over, and is won over in return.

Admittedly, it is problematic that Andie doesn't want children, until she meets Carter and Alice -- it reeks of the argument used against child free women that "you'll change your mind."

The events leading up to the climax are a bit chaotic, with several characters being introduced into the action. Their interactions are very well handled though; Crusie is very talented at making minor characters that are interesting and well fleshed out.

Apparently, the author plans to return to Carter and Alice later, linking Carter with the Goodnight family (from Faking It). I am very excited to see this happen, and I hope she gets around to writing it in the near future!

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