Top critical review
Things were great, except for the romance.
3 December 2017
This novel is set in 1999. There are three main characters (no love triangle, don’t worry). All three work at the same office. We have Beth and Jennifer, two friends who often use their office e-mail to message each other back and forth, something all employees have been told not to do. Then we have Lincoln, the IT guy whose job it is to inspect all the e-mails to make sure rules are being followed.
At first, Lincoln reads the work emails as a fun distraction from his boring job. But slowly, he starts to fall for one of the girls. Now all he has to do is go introduce himself …as the guy who’s been reading her e-mails.
Interesting premise, right? And a really fun book too. That’s why it was hard to rate. I had problems with it, but I also really like it. There were many good things. The writing, as expected from Rainbow Rowell, was great, with the right amount of emotion and humour. The format of the book was great too. I was so upset when the e-mails finally stopped.
I liked all the characters and getting to know them. Lincoln, for example; even though I knew what he was doing was wrong, I couldn’t not like him. He was such a cute, likable and relatable character. So were both Beth and Jennifer. I adored their conversations. They were funny and completely trivial at times. Other times they were meaningful and sweet. Beth and Jennifer’s relationship with each other was precious. We don’t get to see female friendships like this, often.
I also liked getting to know Lincoln’s mom and his sister. They were entertaining. Though I’m surprised Lincoln hasn’t going crazy with the two of them constantly being pushy and trying to shove their opinions down his throat.
Honestly, the only drawback of this book, for me, was the romance. And that’s why it was a book I found hard to rate. Because while I want to say that it was just one thing and, therefore, not a big deal; it was a big deal.
This a contemporary romance novel. Saying it’s okay for the romantic aspect to be lacking is like coming from watching a horror movie and going, “It was a great movie but it wasn’t scary.” It’s the key aspect. And the reason it didn’t work was because I didn’t see it. I didn’t see Lincoln falling for Beth. Yeah, he said she was kind and funny and stuff, but those are such general things. I just couldn’t feel it with them. I could see him liking her, but love? Yeah, I didn’t buy that.
Another thing, that also comes under romance, was the ending. I didn’t like it. And it’s not that I didn’t like where they were in the end, I just dislike how they got there. It felt wrong because it came out of nowhere. The series of events was all wrong and very rushed. I kind of wrote an alternate ending for it in my head. An ending I like better. They still end up where they do, but in a different way. No offence to anyone who likes the original ending, but it didn’t work for me.
And that’s all I have to say about the book. I do recommend it because it was a very enjoyable read. But I think it’ll work better for romantics and, while I read a lot of romance novels, I would definitely not consider me a romantic.