Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Landline - Rainbow Rowell (2014)

2.5 stars

After loving all of Rainbow's previous books I was super excited to read this, however I ended up being pretty disappointed with it.

The writing was hilarious and fun, like all of Rainbow's other books, and I enjoyed all the characters with the exception of Neal but I didn't mind because I understood why Georgie loved him. I think my main problem with this book was that the premise was a magic phone, that had no explanation and wasn't mentioned to any other characters or utilised to it's full potential in the story. Also part of the reason I probably didn't like this book as much as I thought I would is that nothing really happened. In the first chapter Georgie makes a tough decision to stay at home while her husband and kids leave for Christmas at his parents and then quickly afterwards anyone who reads this can see that Georgie is unhappy with what she chose and should just go and be with them, but instead we read about her getting more and more miserable over six days and only talking to her husband in the past through the magic phone. It was also very hard to be invested in what Georgie was going to decide (it was basically going to be will she let her marriage slip away or will she fight for it from the first page) when even though their love story was adorable, I didn't really care because I didn't really like Neal that much. My favourite couple of chapters in this book were the chapters at the end where she actually interacted with other people, in one of them helping deliver puppies with her sister, who she just found out was gay, and the chapter where the adorable couple from the airport give her a lift, who I found out after I had already read this were Cath and Levi from Fangirl and who are ENGAGED. My favourite character in this book was Heather, which is really the only option with pessimistic Neal, depressed Georgie and clearly pining Seth, Heather was a ray of beautiful sunshine in a sea of characters who were all at their grumpiest. I would recommend reading this if you're a fan of Rainbow, because after seeing some other reviews it seems I am just an anomaly in the Rainbow fan club.

The book starts with Georgie telling her husband Neal that she can't go to Omaha with him and their kids for Christmas because the show she has been working on her whole life might be getting picked up but they need four episodes written in a little over a week so she has to stay at home and write them. Neal tells her it's fine, that they'll all go without her and even though Georgie knows he's upset with her she lets him. That night she uses the landline in her mum's house to call Neal's house and realizes that she's talking to past Neal from fourteen years ago, the only other time they spent apart, at the end of which Neal showed up on her door and proposed to her. The more she realizes about this "magic fucking phone" the more she can't focus on her writing and the more she delves into a depression about her relationship. Eventually she realizes that everything she is saying to Neal in the past has already happened, and these conversations are what drives him to go and propose to her. She also eventually realizes that she has to go be with Neal and she goes straight to the airport to go to Omaha. With a little help from Levi and Cath she makes it to Neal's parents house and tells him that she'll try harder from this point onwards.

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