Tuesday, January 24, 2017

If Not for You - by Debbie Macomber: Book Review

Number of pages:
Publishing Date: 21.03.2017

Spoilers ahead! Be warned!

If Not for You is the love story of two unlikely to make it work people. As you read, you realise that is true, it's very unlike that they will last, and that is not only because they come from different backgrounds, but because they are so immature, childish, and over-exaggerating that only in a romance could they make it work. Happy reading!

I tried to come to this novel unhindered by the fact that is was romance, and women's fiction, and chick lit. I had read a Debbie Macomber before, and it had been a cute read. This time around, yes, there were some things that I did like about this novel, such as:
* The main character was OK, I liked the way she ended up in a new city, namely Portland, OR.
* There were some mildly funny scenes
* I especially liked the story of Sunshine and Peter, mostly Sunshine's character. Probably the most likeable and down to earth character.
* Although it wasn't a gripping novel, I was still curious how things will turn out, despite the air of predictability it had.

And sure enough, there were things I did not like, nor did I think believable. They certainly read like something you'd see happening in a movie or a novel like this, despite the characters' remarks that such things don't happen to them, but only in fiction.
* Sam was immature, a teenager-like character who wanted to appear in control of his life. Despite his bad past and hurtful situations, he over-exaggerated mostly everything.
* Beth was a fix-everything kind of person, and I agreed with Sam's harsh observations that she shouldn't mingle in everyone's lives. But of course! everything she did works out just fine in the end. Convenient!
* Their love story is that of two teenagers. I am sorry, but I was not impressed. Overly infatuated with one another. Had it not been for that accident, there wouldn't be a story to tell, and maybe it would have been for the best. Harsh, I know, but I was not goo and aww over their love.
* At some point there seemed to be an unnecessary repetition: the author mentioned Sunshine and Ellie's rift in relationship, and twice she compared it with the large gap of the Grand Canyon. We got it the first time. Another thing, when Beth told Sam about her talk to Peter, Sunshine's first love, he offered his opinion and she told him about her opinion about Sunshine's ex-lover. Some chapters later, Beth brings up the same discussion and acts as if this is fresh news, despite talking about the same man before.

I am always overly judgmental when it comes to romance, but I am sure those who are fans of this genre will like this novel. For me it was an OK read, easy for a lazy day around the house. The fans of Debbie Macomber will surely appreciate it come March, I am sure. It's cute and darling, and it gives you warm feelings.  

Now someone tell me why I keep reading novels I know are not my go-to genre?!

I received a free advanced e-book copy of this novel from the publisher via Net Galley. All thoughts expressed here are my own.

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