Life After Yes by Aidan Donnelly Rowley – Book Review

Life After Yes by Aidan Donnelly Rowley
Published by Avon A, an imprint of Harper Collins

A successful young lawyer, it seems that Quinn’s life should be perfect when her handsome, loving investment banker boyfriend Sage whisks her to Paris for the weekend to propose. Shortly after she tells him ‘yes,’ however, the doubts begin with a dream in which she feels trapped and finds herself at the altar facing three grooms, including her ex-boyfriend and her trainer from the gym. Her doubts, exacerbated by her grief of losing her father in the World Trade Center during 9/11 just a few short months earlier, lead her to be nasty to Sage and drink entirely too much, not to mention flirting too much with other men. It is time for Quinn to really consider what she wants from life, and it won’t be easy.

I’m afraid you all are going to get sick of my raving about books, but here is another one that I L.O.V.E.D. loved.

Quinn’s voice was just so completely authentic that I got completely caught up in her story and finished the entire 300+ page book in one weekend day, staying up far later than I had intended because I couldn’t bear to wait to complete this journey with Quinn. Some of the things she did I very much disagreed with, but I could empathize with how she arrived at every decision. Parts of the basic storyline – girl gets engaged, has doubts, boozes it up – may make “Life After Yes” sound fluffy, but Rowley brought a great deal of depth to Quinn and her storyline. I also thought that the death of Quinn’s father in 9/11 was done very well. It brought an added layer of gravity to the story, but I never felt that Rowley was using it in a way that felt manipulative of people’s 9/11 sentiments or cheapened the event.¬† Instead it informed Quinn’s character and her actions in very believable ways.

I really loved this book, and very highly recommend it. We will be discussing it with Aidan Donnelly Rowley and the rest of the SheKnows Book Club on Thursday, December 9th 8-11pm Eastern. Plenty of time to grab it and get it read, so I hope to see some of you there!

Buy this book from:
A local independent bookstore via Indiebound.*

Source: SheKnows Book Club.
* These links are all affiliate links. If you buy your book here I’ll make a very small amount of money that goes towards hosting, giveaways, etc.

House Rules by Jodi Picoult – Book Review

House Rules by Jodi Picoult

Emma’s son Jacob is obsessed with forensic science. He likes to stage fake crime scenes at their house, and fingerprint household items in his homemade lab. Jacob also has Aspergers Syndrome, so he doesn’t interact with the rest of the world in the same way that most teenage boys would. This becomes a real problem with Jacob’s social skills tutor, Jess, goes missing and is eventually discovered dead. Suddenly the way Jacob interacts makes him look suspicious, even guilty. When he is charged with her murder, will his Aspergers hinder him in trying to stage his defense?

I’ve had a lot of trouble with Picoult’s books lately. I used to really like her work, but then I think I burned out on her. I was sick of the emotional manipulation, and I was sick of the formula with the BIG TWIST at the end. Her most recent book I read, “Change of Heartreally disappointed me.¬†With all of this in mind, I was somewhat reticent to pick up “House Rules.” After all, it is a big book at over 500 pages. I know that Picoult’s books are quick reads, but if was still not enjoying her work, that might be an annoying 500+ pages.

Luckily, I actually really enjoyed “House Rules!” I did not think it was as emotionally manipulative as much of Picoult’s work and not quite as formulaic, either. Instead, I thought Picoult did a fabulous job getting into the head of a teenager with Aspergers and giving insight into the life of a single mother trying to figure out how to do her best for her two sons, one of whom had special needs. The only thing that sort of annoyed me was Emma’s assertions that Jacob’s Aspergers was caused by his vaccinations, almost in the same breathe as admitting that autism rates continue to rise even after mercury has been removed from vaccinations. At least she didn’t go so far as being anti-vaccination.

Although this isn’t my favorite of Picoult’s books (those would be “My Sister’s Keeper” and “Keeping Faith”), I did enjoy it more than much of her work I’ve read recently.

Buy this book from:

A local independent bookstore via Indiebound

This review was done with a book received from the publisher for the Book Club..
* These links are all affiliate links. If you buy your book here I’ll make a very small amount of money that goes towards hosting, giveaways, etc.

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