Yes, of course. Monday. The day we're supposed to unload furniture is the day Gustav is set to wallop us. See the little indentation on the western side of Mississippi? That's us; smack in the middle of the current predicted path of Gustav. Big sigh. I'm soliciting prayers that Gustav will make a nice little jog and miss us entirely.
And, the book . . . The Importance of Being Married by Gemma Townley
This is the first of a trilogy based on Oscar Wilde's plays. Obviously, "The Importance of Being Earnest" is the basis for the story of Jessica Wild, a young woman who befriends elderly Grace Hampton while visiting her own grandmother at a nursing home. Jessica pretends she has fallen in love with her boss and married him, just to keep Grace happy. But, when Grace leaves Jess a large inheritance contingent on proving she is "Mrs. Milton", Jess and her friend Helen cook up a plan to make Anthony Milton fall in love with her quickly: Operation Marriage.
The opening of this book was bizarre and confusing, but once I got into it I enjoyed the fluffiness. And, then it started to get on my nerves. The plot was far, far too transparent and the heroine so dim that I kept thinking about a key-note speech I once heard that was specifically about heroines who are "too stupid to live". This book just didn't work for me. There were a few little quotes that made me smile, though:
Grandma preferred long, turgid books that gave her headaches. [p. 9]
Hesitantly, I pressed a button on the remote control, and my presentation flashed into life. I wanted to spend as long as possible on the first slide -- the one with the title on it -- because it was undoubtedly the best; once it left the screen, things would go downhill all the way. [p. 78]
A little image flashed into my head of Max and I talking for hours, of me making him laugh -- something I'd done only a few times but felt so rewarding because it was so hard -- of him letting me lean against him to get some sleep the day after a late night at the office . . . [p. 192]
The last quote reminded me of one of my greatest joys: those wonderful moments when my husband tips his head back and laughs at something I've said.
My copy of The Importance of Being Married is an advanced reader I just happened across at the library, so some of those quotes may have been changed (I hope so -- it should be "Max and me", shouldn't it?). I read the entire book but it was just too obvious and by p. 209 I'd made a note to myself about the annoying transparency of the plot. I've got to learn to give up on books that don't thrill me, but I was 2/3 of the way finished, by then! I had to plow on.
I'm iffy about recommending this book. If you can handle a wimpy heroine who can't figure out the obvious and you're in a total fluff mood . . . I suppose. But, it didn't do much for me. I have one more book by this author and I'll give her a second chance but I'm going with the 50-page rule.
I finished Princess Academy by Shannon Hale, last night, and loved it. Will try to post a quickie review of that one, tomorrow. And, I'm now really getting into Talk of the Town by Lisa Wingate -- the characters are great; this would be a good one for the Southern Reading Challenge.
On this day in Bookfool's Reading History, in 2004: I finished The Underground Man by Mick Jackson and started The Second Coming of Lucy Hatch by Marsha Moyer and The Restraint of Beasts by Magnus Mills.