I’m really excited about April. Love is in the air!
I’ll be going to a wedding at the end of the month–something I’ve not done for over five years!
I’m also working hard on Settle Down Now, which I hope to get to you soon. It’s put me in the mood to celebrate love and to share new (to me) women’s fiction and women writers I’m particularly impressed with.
And to up the excitement levels even more, I’ll be one of the blogs on the official blog tour of a much loved Romance novelist! All about that next week.
In the meantime, to whet your appetites for a good read for us girls (and some boys), here’s a chicklit book that I missed whilst I was in China.
Book Review: Letters To A Love Rat
Author: Niamh Greene
Genre: Women’s Fiction/ChickLit
It’s been a little while since I’ve read a good fun chick-lit novel like this. I’m a fan of Meg Cabot and Niamh Greene produces a crazy, gossipy, humor-filled read; which still manages to leave you with a satisfied sigh that all is right with the world after all.
Letters To A Love Rat had me amused, thoughtful and shaking my head (both ways).
While Letters To A Love Rat may have Molly, Julie and Eve lying to themselves and to everyone else, they are never mean girls who veer into pure evil revenge and hate-filled monologues as so many others would. As each reflect on their relationship with Charlie (the Love Rat in question), they find truths about themselves which help them move on. I thoroughly enjoyed this novel, racing through it much quicker that I thought I would.
The Whole story:
Letters To A Love Rat really follows three stories, each revealing a little of the Love Rat’s true unchanging nature and behavior:
Molly is the current wife in Charlie’s messy life. She’s just married him. And he’s just left her–sans explain, just a note on her pillow–a day or two after getting back from the honeymoon. Molly’s totally blindsided. She knows she won’t get compassion from her terror of a boss, Magazine editor Minty, and she can’t bear to tell her co-workers the awful truth either. Her life gets even worst when Minty insists she write an article on Getting Married for their True Love Issue–‘Capital T, Capital L’, and assigns Molly an interview with her ex-boyfriend David. There are only two people she dares confide in: her sister Tanya, and Al (one of her best friends). Both are convinced Charlie must have been having an affair. Neither of them know that Molly might not be over David just yet.
Julie is the woman Charlie’s seeing at work. She’s blogging about her job as a book publicist and her hot affair with her boss. She knows the relationship is wrong, especially now that Charlie is married. But when Charlie tells her that he’s left Molly for her, Julie can’t resist allowing him to mess up her life further–or blogging about it.
Eve is in therapy. She thought she was over Charlie, but two years later, her therapist is still trying to get her to process her feelings for him. It’s Eve who’s writing the actual letters to Charlie, though she’ll never send them.
Set in Dublin, Letters To A Love Rat is remarkably believable, yet still has a sparkle of true magic. What’s makes this story special is that all of us know a Molly, Julie or Eve; if we aren’t one of them ourselves. All three characters are people we can relate to: whether it’s depressed and most damaged Eve; fun-loving Julie; or practical and pleasing-everybody Molly. And let’s be honest, most of us have known a Love Rat or two as well.
Soulmates? And Why Marry?
In true chick-lit style,it’s easy to identify soulmates, although it’s not so obvious to the characters concerned. The great questions Niamh Greene raises are: Why did you get married? and Why should you get married?
I liked the way Niamh Greene has explored these questions.
What could have been better:
The Open Forum on Julie’s blog sometimes seemed to long to me, slowing the story down when I wanted to find out what happens next.
Carla Ryan, Chick-litters and CHICKEN!
One of my favorite parts of the novel was the chapter about chick-litters at a book signing for Carla Ryan–a bestselling chick-lit author. I’ve never seen a mob of chick-lit readers before, and I adored the whole scene in this chapter. I loved Carla’s character both here and in a later chapter.
Carla’s whole character and behavior merely confirmed that Niamh Greene agrees with my belief that good writers are all about people:
we sense people’s stories, read people and tell stories with happy-endings in the hope that our readers will always be aware that happy-endings (romantic ones, at least) are always worth believing in.
Unless you CHICKEN out. Now you have to read it to see what I’m going on about 😀
There are magazine style personality quizzes at the end of each of Eve’s letters.
So what did I learn from this whole experience?
I learned that it’s perfectly normal to take a long time to get over someone whom you’ve loved deeply. I learned that it’s normal (though not healthy) to shy away from truths because they might be painful. I learned that chick-litters are not to be taken lightly.
Recommended to: Meg Cabot fans, anyone who’s had their heart-broken by a Love Rat
Be sure to drop by here next week to see who’s on the blog tour!