Saturday, October 27, 2012

When It Happens to You by Molly Ringwald

When It Happens to You: A Novel in Stories by Molly Ringwald
Copyright 2012
Harper It Books - Fiction
237 pp.

His turn as Trigorin in The Seagull had been hailed as "superlative" (according to the college newspaper), matched only by his interpretation of Richard Roma in Glengarry Glen Ross, in which local reviewers found in Peter that intangible fusion of intensity and irresistible insouciance--in short, the elusive charisma that is the golden ticket for any young actor. 

In When It Happens to You, Molly Ringwald explores modern relationships -- love (including that between parent and child), attraction, betrayal, heartbreak and healing in a series of interconnected short stories.

I chose the excerpt above because "that intangible fusion of intensity and irresistible insouciance"struck me as representative of the author's grasp of language.  When It Happens to You is surprisingly well-written.  Apart from a few minor grammatical errors, there was absolutely nothing that jumped out at me as worthy of criticism.  I'd heard early comments to that effect and decided I had to see for myself. I love the way the stories in When It Happens to You are interconnected without always being immediately obvious in their connection.  Ringwald really has a way of dragging readers into her stories, immersing them in characterization and setting and then yanking out the emotional rug without totally removing hope from the equation.

The bottom line:  Highly recommended, no-holds-barred writing (there are R-rated moments).  I'm impressed.

Cover thoughts:  Love the pretty, graphic cover.  It's appealing and strong, very eye-catching in my humble opinion.  I always try to match my bookmarks to the covers of the books that I'm reading and because of that little flash of tomato red wording, "a novel in stories", I used a bookmark with a photo I took of rows of tomatoes.  They looked terrific together and made me think, "Hmm, I need to incorporate teal and tomato red in my decorating, somewhere."  Weird but true.

I'm writing my review of When It Happens to You late on a Saturday night because both sons, my daughter-in-law, my grand-dog and Kiddo's girlfriend are all here.  My daughter-in-law said she'd love to read Molly Ringwald's latest book, so I figured I'd better whip out a review before the book walks out the door.

Meanwhile, we finally have a carved jack-o'-lantern, thanks to Kiddo's girlfriend.  Isn't it cute?

This has been a truly fun weekend.  Fiona has handled the influx of visitors well (including the canine) but poor Isabel has retreated to the closet to have a nervous breakdown.  I considered it a major victory when I peeked into the closet and saw that she's eaten some of the food I set out for her, even if it wasn't much.  She is such a sensitive girl.

From the Haiku book I just purchased, yesterday, and promptly read:

Best to those who are expecting bad weather or bracing for a tsunami.

©2012 Nancy Horner. All rights reserved. If you are reading this post at a site other than Bookfoolery and Babble or its RSS feed, you are reading a stolen feed. Email for written permission to reproduce text or photos.


  1. I'm always a little leery when celebrities try their hand at fiction - I'm glad this is good. I love the jack-o-lantern!

    1. Me, too, but some actors really can write and Molly Ringwald is definitely one of them.

      Thanks! I chose the pattern and Kiddo's girlfriend carved. She actually asked if she could carve our pumpkin and I was thrilled to let her. They have a tendency to rot so quickly because of our heat that we stopped bothering with the carving a long time ago. It's nice to have a cool-looking pumpkin, for once!

  2. I know my pumpkin is already rotted on the front porch. :( I bought the flat iron pieces to make a scarecrow at the Canton flee market. I loved it into the pumpkin side collapsed. lol

    1. I'll bet that was cute! Our front door faces the west so it gets some harsh afternoon light and we actually left the pumpkin in the garage for a couple weeks. I figured there was no way it would survive if we even put it out there, uncarved. We're appreciating the cold front, now that it's done!

  3. It IS blustery outside right now and only going to get worse. I have one more load of laundry to get through before I expect the power to go out. PLEASE just let it be a few hours or less than one day. I can manage through that. And please say happy gentle waves for where the boat is hopefully on high enough land. But hey, if not, that's why we have insurance...

    You have made me want to read this book. and HAPPY HALLOWEEN! Red and teal are a lovely color combo.

    1. Hope you manage to get all your laundry done. It's horrible having no power and chores staring in you in the face (nothing is worse than forgetting to vacuum rugs before a power outage -- been there, done that in both hurricanes and ice storms). Hope you manage to relax and get in some good reading time. I wondered about your boat. Is it in winter storage?

      I think you'd like the book, although you're a little hard to peg. LOL DIL took it home with her or I'd have sent it to you.

      Happy Halloween, Carrie!!!

  4. I got the chance to see Ringwald perform in a play about 3 years ago, and was wondering what she was up to now. It looks like I need to read this one and see what I think of it. I am glad that you found it to be wonderful. Very nice review today!

    1. Very cool that you got to see her, Heather! Her writing is excellent. I think you'll love this book when you get to it.


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