Thursday, August 14, 2014

Review: And One Last Thing ... by Molly Harper

Release Date: July 27, 2010
Publisher: Gallery Books
Source: Library
 Author Links: Goodreads | Website

"If Singletree’s only florist didn’t deliver her posies half-drunk, I might still be married to that floor-licking, scum-sucking, receptionist-nailing hack-accountant, Mike Terwilliger."
Lacey Terwilliger’s shock and humiliation over her husband’s philandering prompt her to add some bonus material to Mike’s company newsletter: stunning Technicolor descriptions of the special brand of "administrative support" his receptionist gives him. The detailed mass e-mail to Mike’s family, friends, and clients blows up in her face, and before one can say "instant urban legend," Lacey has become the pariah of her small Kentucky town, a media punch line, and the defendant in Mike’s defamation lawsuit.
Her seemingly perfect life up in flames, Lacey retreats to her family’s lakeside cabin, only to encounter an aggravating neighbor named Monroe. A hunky crime novelist with a low tolerance for drama, Monroe is not thrilled about a newly divorced woman moving in next door. But with time, beer, and a screen door to the nose, a cautious friendship develops into something infinitely more satisfying.

Lacey has to make a decision about her long-term living arrangements, though. Should she take a job writing caustic divorce newsletters for paying clients, or move on with her own life, pursuing more literary aspirations? Can she find happiness with a man who tells her what he thinks and not what she wants to hear? And will she ever be able to resist saying one . . . last . . . thing?

Warning: I don't personally consider anything in this review a spoiler.
But I will be talking about some of the things that happened, and why they bothered me.

I have a very love/hate relationship with chick-lit.
I love the fluffiness and humor.
I hate the resolution at the end.
And One Last Thing... was no exception. I was having the time of my life for the first 90% of the book. I honestly did not want to put it down. It was like bubblegum crack!
In fact, I tried to make myself a new pot of coffee one-handed, in order to not let go of the book.
It didn't work out well. I married a granola-cruncher who insisted that we get one of those reusable coffee filter things...
My Family: Saving the earth one coffee filter at a time!
Well, instead of being able to take the filter and dump it (like a normal caffeine junkie), I was trying to pry this thing out (one-handed), and it slipped into the sink. 
Where some thoughtful child had put a half eaten bowl of cheese dip. There is nothing quite as disheartening as looking at the only means of your next cup of coffee...coated in congealed queso dip.
At any rate, I was really having fun with this story.
The last 10%, though? 
Such. A. Letdown.
Yes, yes, yes. Like all chick-lit the plucky heroine gets a Happily Ever After.
But, like most of the chic-lit that I've read, the characters that I hated don't really get what they deserve. It all sort of resolves itself with a whimper, instead of the BANG! that I always hope for...but never get.
And maybe that's because, underneath my teddy-bear like exterior, I'm an evil harpy who likes to see assholes suffer and squirm. I mean, is taking the High Road really necessary?
Ok, fine. Maybe it real life.

Another thing that gets me about a lot of chick-lit, is that the heroines seem to get shitty advice from family and friends. Again, this one is not an exception.
Lacey sends out an angry email outing her husband for being a cheating scum.
Instead of giving her a high five, the entire cast of characters reacts with varying forms of dismay. Her family (with the exception of her father...I'll get to him in a minute) is supportive, but none of them think she did the right thing. Her husband sues her for slander, so her lawyer tells her to go hide out in the woods, where she can't get in any more trouble. And Monroe (the love interest) gets angry with her, because she thinks about taking a job writing those kinds of emails for other jilted women.
And her father? He won't talk to her, and wants her out of his house ASAP.
This part of the story particularly bother me, because it was never addressed. 
During her short stay with her parents, Lacey observes how her father is sooooo sweet to her mother. Like letting the tap get cold before filling her glass. But in the next breath, he's telling her mother that she needs to quit coddling Lacey and feeding her pancakes, so she'll get out of their house.
What father does that?! And she's not even angry about it. Nobody in the entire story gets angry about it. Are you serious? I would be LIVID with my husband if he said something like that. But her mother is all, 'Hush, Dear. She might hear you.'.
The fuck?
Then Lacey got into a fight with Monroe, because he felt like she needed to pursue a 'real' writing career (like him), and let go of the (rather lucrative) offer made to her by a woman who wants her to write the snarky I'm Leaving Your Sorry Ass emails. 
I thought she made some perfectly valid points about him not trying to tell her what to do with her life...Thank You Very Much. 
But in a shocking turn of events, her brother and his friends all (of course) agree that she needs to apologize to him, though. After all, if they could find a good man, they'd snap him up in a heartbeat. Well, they're all maybe they would.
And (of course) she realizes they're right. After all, Monroe has her best interests at heart.
The fuck?

Alrighty. Like I said, I thoroughly enjoyed the lighthearted breezy feel of the book, and it was only the ending that really turned me off.
Couple that with the fact that this sucker has rave reviews from almost everyone besides me, and I think that maybe I'm just not cut out for this genre.


Blodeuedd said...

Ok the end does annoy me, but the rest! Yay bubblegum crack

Melissa (My words and pages) said...

Aaaa. I've not really gotten into much Chick lit. But these do sound fun, if that's what you go in looking for. :) Thank you.

Carmel @ Rabid Reads said...

I'm a huge fan of Harper's paranormal series', but I have yet to try her Chick Lit. I always get a kick out of her sense of humour though, so despite your issue with the ending, I'm sure that I'd still enjoy this book. Fab review, Anne!


I did enjoy the vast majority of the book, so fans of Harper's stuff won't be disappointed with this one. I need to check out her paranormal series!

Post a Comment

Due to an increase in spam, all comments are moderated. Even if you do not see an "awaiting approval" message, please only submit your comment once. Sorry for the inconvenience.