Thursday, February 27, 2014

Her - What I Read in February

I am an avid reader. I love to read! I challenged myself last year (in 2013) to read 75 books and came up one short. This year I decided to challenge myself to read 65 (more manageable, more likely to achieve this one).

So far, I have read 7 books and GoodReads says I am two books behind schedule. I am going to have to work on this next month. The fact that the Olympics are over will help. I was staying up late watching the events and not reading as much as normal.

This is what I read this month. I included the descriptions from GoodReads and my thoughts.

For Better, for Worse by Carole Matthews

For Better, for Worse

GoodReads says:
When it comes to love and marriage, Josie Flynn knows what’s right…

For everyone but herself…

After her marriage to Damien ended in disaster, Londoner Josie Flynn – thirtysomething and single again – is flying across the ocean to her American cousin’s ‘big mistake’ wedding. In her present ‘love stinks’ frame of mind, the last person she expects to be seated next to on the flight is someone like Matt Jarvis. A recently divorced rock journalist, Matt is sensitive, good-looking and remarkably attentive – and before their plane touches down, Josie’s smitten. So how can she hope to convince her cousin to cut and run when Josie is all ready to leap into love again – with a stranger, no less, who might be just another Mr Totally Wrong in Mr Seductively Right’s clothing?

The point is rendered moot, of course, once they land in New York and she and Matt go their separate ways. After all Josie’s got prenuptial confabs to worry about and that dreaded lilac chiffon bridesmaid’s dress to wear. But Dante himself couldn’t have dreamed up the hell this wedding is proving to be – and when her dream hunk reappears and throws himself into the mix, Josie finds herself wondering how she – or any unattached modern woman – can hope to survive the new romantic rules of the twenty-first century.

I say:
I found this book to be very irritating. I found most of the characters annoying, including the main male character and all the supporting characters. I didn't mind Josie's character much, but I didn't find myself rooting for her either. The plot twists I thought were very far-fetched and, at times, I thought that the author had included events for shock value only. They added nothing to the plot and seemed pointless. I found myself wishing the book would end and when it did, I no longer cared about the characters and whether they found "true love". I was happy it was over.

GoodReads' Rating (with 1,838 ratings): 3.35 stars
My Rating: 1 star

With or Without You

GoodReads says:
After her boyfriend, Jake, dumps her for an Angelina Jolie look-alike who climbs Mt. Everest, Lyssa Allen decides maybe a little adventure of her own can win him back. Leaving hair dryer, lattes and dreams of babies behind, this tougher-than-she-thought London editor sets off for Nepal. Her month-long sojourn teaches Lyssa that her horizons are bigger than she knew -- and the man of her dreams far different than she thought. She even gains a new perspective on her former baby obsession. As her eyes are opened by her handsome American tour guide, Lyssa wonders if she can ever return to her old life. And when it's time to go home, she faces the hardest decision of her life.

I say:
From the beginning, I found a lot of connections between this book and Eat, Love, Pray by Elizabeth Gilbert. Eat, Love, Pray is much better. I found myself rooting for Lyssa from the beginning. I really liked her and most of the supporting characters. I found the descriptions of the treks she took in Nepal to be lacking, though I know it wasn't a guide book. Some more descriptions would have been nice. I did not like the side plot line with the sister, Edie, and Pip. I thought that was unnecessary. Neve's character was the villian, as expected, but the event with Jake (if you read the book, you will know what I mean) struck a horrible chord with me and I was done at that moment. 
My biggest issue with the book is the soul searching inner dialogues and monologues. I know that the main conflict in the novel was internal so that means soul searching passages are necessary. But I found that what the author should have conveyed in one paragraph would stretch for pages and pages. I found myself skipping ahead just so I could stop having to listen to Jake talk about what a mistake he made or Lyssa try to decide what her life is going to be now. I was more annoyed and frustrated with the characters, instead of invested in them.

GoodReads' Rating (with 2,372 ratings): 3.69 stars
My Rating: 1 star

I love reading books by British authors, but I think what this month has taught me is that I need to skip over the Carole Matthews shelf at the library. She and I just don't click as author and reader. 

What books do you recommend I read in March? I would love some suggestions!

Happy Reading,

1 comment:

  1. Awesome reviews! I think I should probably stay away from these! I love to to read too. I have done 8 books so far this year. I don't really set a goal for myself, but mark down what I've read. Can't wait for more reviews throughout the year!

    ~Ashley @ A Cute Angle


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