Monday, August 20, 2007

"Sorry, but you'd done one of your drifting-off-into-space tricks there, and I know how long your meandering little fantasies can last."

Maybe i actually needed those hordes of junior high school kids to take out my rampagey crankiness on because now that i'm working in a calmer library i seem to be venting it on poor feckless Irish authors like Claudia Carroll. It happens once again, i get a book in my box, my hold notification on it, with no recollection as to why i put it on hold (at least this time i had a vague recollection of putting it on hold~so That's progress...) So i set out to read Remind Me Again Why I Need a Man: to find Mr. Right, first you have to revisit all your Mr. Wrongs (somewhat cute title but not exactly my usual~should have been a hint right there.)
I have a couple of problems right off the bat, the writing is okay, but the "lovely girls" as the narrator, Amelia Lockwood, refers to herself and her very tight knight foursome of friends are WAAAAY too much like an Irish version of Sex and the City (granted one of them is happily married, and one of them is a gay man, but other than that...), there are even a few lines that if they are not direct quotes they are pretty damn close. Another one is the constant need for Amelia or one of her friends to constantly exclaim things like "you can't make this stuff up" or "if you saw this in a movie you would not believe it" or to describe events as surreal (either i'm living in the surreal world or they're really not that surreal) and you really should not be pointing out how unreal your events are since apparently you CAN make this stuff up (you are writing a novel after all, aren't you?~or, if you're not making it up, perhaps you should rewrite it to make it more believable, i'm not really sure~just stop telling me how unbelievable the whole thing is), relay the events and let them stand (or regardless, it all just gets so annoying).
And then, perhaps i would be one of the few people to notice this since i am a child of the 1980s but if you are flashing back to say 1984 please don't make reference to a movie you saw that wasn't released until 1985~just a bit of research would fix that (same goes for other time specific reference~i know you're filling atmosphere but come on.) In general the editing could be much, much better (i know, i know, people in glass houses and all that but this is self-publishing after all...)
I guess the basic premise of the novel was just off for me as i have never felt a NEED for a man, a relationship, or marriage~i always saw those things as compromise and if the person came along who i felt it was worth it for, then sure...but i realize i am in the minority here. Beyond that it threw me off that though the purpose of (this class Amelia is taking to get her married of within a year) is to track down her exes and find out why they didn't stick, she never actually asks them any questions about their relationship, just encounters comic situation after comic situation.
Okay, after rant, you might find it surprising to hear that i found the novel somewhat enjoyable. It went by quickly and made for a nice diversion (and look at all the crankiness i cranked out). And though i thought i saw a predictable ending i was presently surprised. What do you know?

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