Author: Rainbow Rowell
Release Date: April 14th, 2011
Published by: Dutton Adult
The Hook: An info tech geek falling in love through email? Yep. And the fact that I read and love Eleanor and Park.
I’ve been stuck ever since reading Ginger Scott’s amazing story, Wild Reckless. I kid you not. I’ve been going through my TBR list the past few weeks came up with nothing. Nothing that interest me at the moment. Nothing that jumped out at me and screamed “Read me!” Then, this book crossed the check in desk at our library. It piqued my interest.
And yes, you read correctly. I previewed this book only eight hours ago. Eight hours ago I was on Chapter 21. Eight hours later, I’m done and ready to review. At 2:30 a.m., I’m wanting to discuss this because after reading this, I’m a tad bit too wired to sleep.
Plot: The story takes place in the 1999’s, when the internet really starts to take-off. An era I’m all too familiar with and can definitely relate to. Come to think of it, I could relate to the 80s backdrop in Eleanor and Park as well (and if this dates me, then so be it!) Anyway, back to the plot. Lincoln O’Neil applies and gets a job The Courier, a local newspaper, as an information technician. His job? To read any emails that get flagged for breaking company policy and determines if they should get a warning or not. Two co-workers, who are best friends, consistently breaks this policy by sending personal emails to each other which consistently gets filtered into Lincoln’s review folder, yet Lincoln can’t bring himself to send warnings to these two ladies. By the time he realizes he’s falling in love with one of them, even before seeing him and knowing she has a boyfriend, it’s too late for him to change course. Damage is done. Cupid’s arrow has found its target.
I love this plot line. I really do. Maybe it’s because I grew up in this era? I remember the Y2K bug driving everyone crazy, or at the very least making them nervous and anxious. Maybe because I know what it’s like to be a computer geek in a world where computers are foreign objects? (I remember explaining email to my parents and helping them set up email accounts of their own. I remember when 258 MB was a big deal for computer memory) Maybe because I can relate to Lincoln’s world, his personality, and his problem of figuring out what to do after you graduate, and after life throws a wrench in your carefully laid out plans for your future.
Whatever it is, I love this plot. And I love the way Rowell narrates it. We get the story through Lincoln’s perspective, reading email exchanges between Beth and Jennifer and then reading Lincoln’s life and experiences. We see how their email exchanges affect his life. I love it. It’s a novel, but not really a novel. The chapters are short, sweet, and to the point and yet very … deep. It’s the way Rowell narrates, I swear. Such a good job.
Rainbow Rowell can write a mean love story. I mean, seriously. She is genius when it comes to love stories. She writes the kind of love stories that stick with you. Always. I mean … wow. Okay, I have so much more to say on this, but that’s for another post. Seriously
Lincoln is a great character is awesome!. He’s this shy guy, who found the love of his life in high school, who follows the love of his life to college, and then Nemesis decides “Ah, too much good fortune …” then *poof*. Lincoln life is heading in a direction he never thought he’d take which leads him to meet Jennifer and Beth, through email of course. I like him. He’s stuck. I know what stuck feels like. I think we all know what stuck feels like.
Jennifer and Beth are hilarious. They’re witty and funny, just like how you’d imagine people who work for a newspaper should be. Not to mention that Beth is a movie critic and reviewer. I can relate to that. Seriously, everything is relatable in this story. I love the fact that Beth and Jennifer uses movie references and such to get their points across. Yeah, I’m a sucker for pop culture references, especially when I understand them!
Supporting characters in this story are great. I love Eve, Lincoln’s sister and Lincoln’s rough-around-the-edges best friend. I really ha– strongly dislike Sam (and I’m leaving it at that, even though I can somewhat understand what she felt, I ha– strongly dislike the way she went about it).
As much as I love this story and want to add it to my library, I don’t think I will. It’s one of those books that’s a really good read but you can kind of let it go until someday you’re browsing the library shelves and come across it and get all excited and think “Hello, old friend. It’s time for a reread.” Does that make sense? To me, the story is better not added to my library. Make of it what you will. I would definitely recommend it as a must-read; most definitely and most especially if you like a good love story, because …, just flashback to what I said previously. I’d recommend this book to any and all book geeks. It’s a good read!