rating: 3 of 5 stars
I debated on whether this book was to get 2 or 3 stars. Finally decided on 3 stars because I did like the storyline. What I didn't like was the swearing, excessive use of certain words and the talk about porn and sex. Not the normal descriptive stuff, but the talk of how much certain characters participated in these activities. Anyway, enough of the negative, I am one who almost always has to finish the book once I get started.
The main storyline in this book is about a guy named Toby. Toby's story starts out with his father not really putting much love or stock in him. Toby does manage to move on naturally through life, getting married and such. When he is about to get married, his dad buys and gives him a house to start his new life. At the same time, his dad takes off to Africa to start a new chapter in his life. This house is about the only good things his dad seems to have done for him. Then, Toby's wife leaves after a matter of weeks. Left to himself, he places an "advert" for roommates. He receives such response and ends up with a house full of 'mates' that change over the years, except for one, Ruby. Fast forward 15 yrs later and life events turns his life upside down. He meets Leah, his neighbor from across the street and begins a transformation that each of us, at some point, must go through...growing up and taking responsibility for ourselves regardless of our upbringing and parents and everything before!
I really liked this story, as the Toby is about the same as myself and most of my circle of friends. I could really feel some of the same struggles and confusions on where to go next in life as Toby and other characters in this story. Once I chose to look past the language, especially, which I still view as unnecessary, this turned out to be a good book. I am glad I read it...thank you Reader's Choice! Although, I do not plan on reading any of Lisa Jewells other books, now that I know her style and such.
As for quotes:
pg 42: "He's taken ninety-seven years of life to the grave with him. All those experiences, all those emotions. People he loved, places he's seen - gone. I wish I'd talked to him more. Wish I'd let him pass on his stories to me. I could have kept them for him. You know." As a genealogist, I loved this statement, how often we wait until it is too late and then wished we had done something more. My advice, DON'T WAIT, if they don't want to talk, that is their choice, but make sure they know they have the option by asking questions!
pg 217: "I am eminently disturbable, I can assure you. Any excuse to get away from my computer. The two of us spend far too much time together as it is." 'nuff said
pg 337: "Real love, it doesn't just pop up when it's convenient, you know? It doesn't just turn up and fit in with everything. Real love is a pain in the arse. You have to make compromises for it." good advice, imo
pg 350-351: "There were no 'mistakes' in life - just a series of random decisions that led to a series of random outcomes, good and bad." This is so very true, every decision we make has a consequence, whether it is good or bad, immediate or eternal, all choices we make have consequences we must experience.
pg 368: "Because, you know, love's not always convenient, is it? Sometimes it's just a pain in the arse. But if you don't try, then you don't know. And I want to try. And I want to know. Because otherwise I'll spend the rest of my life wondering what happened..." I know this is a repeat of sorts, but I think it is very true in a lot of things, not just love. We have to try and find out what happens, no regrets!
pg 444: "I've spent my entire life letting the world wash over me. But not any more. It's my turn now." EXACTLY!