Thursday 29 November 2018
#CBR10 Book 103: "Attachments" by Rainbow Rowell
Rating: 5 stars
#CBR10Bingo: So Popular!
This is my second re-read of Attachments. I first read it back in 2011, and my original review can be found here. Considering how much I loved the book back then (and still do), it's a fairly short and unenthusiastic review. But it'll give you the basics of what the book is about.
When it came to selecting a book for the "So popular!" square, all ten choices (among the most reviewed books of the ten years on the Cannonball blog) were ones I'd already read at least once. Some, like Divergent, The Girl on the Train and Gone Girl, I really just didn't feel like reading again. Some, I'd already read more than once, and it seemed unnecessary to revisit them. I had decided to reread Eleanor & Park, the only Rainbow Rowell novel that I've only read once before. However, only about fifteen pages in, the main reason why I've never really wanted to pick it back up (and why it's my lowest rated of all of her books) started upsetting me too much (Eleanor's incredibly horrible home life, especially her awful stepfather) and I realised that I just had to pick one of the other books on the list if I was to be able to complete my bingo card.
Hence I picked up Attachments once more. Goodreads helpfully showed me that it's been more than five years since I last read it and I was interested in seeing if I still loved it. Short answer, yes. I am a huge fan of the romantic comedy as a genre and am so very ready for it to come back into popularity (Netflix seems to be doing what they can to help, I am grateful). This book would make a great film, as long as it was adapted by the right people. I'd be terrified that they'd mess something up and ruin it, but recently, there's been a lot of good romantic book adaptations, so with any luck, I'd end up with something that was possibly EVEN better than the source material (like Crazy Rich Asians or To All the Boys I've Loved Before)
This was Rowell's debut novel, and when I read it, I had no idea that she would become one of my favourite writers, with each and every new book just resonating with me on a special level. In each and every one of her books, there seems to be scenes that speak directly to me, and in some, I possibly identify a little bit too much. The book where this most holds true, is Fangirl, but with this book, I see so much of myself and my best friend Lydia in Beth and Jennifer's friendship. While they e-mail each other daily, she and I became friends through letters (because this was in the before times, when the internet was not readily available and we had to wait weeks for a letter from the other one). Now of course, we have not one, but two different Facebook chats going (one also includes our husbands) at any given time and we try to video chat at least once every week or so. Technology is a wonderful thing. If we worked in the same place, though, we would totally be sending the sort of e-mails that Beth and Jennifer exchange, and you'd best believe we'd trigger any filter that looked for inappropriate words or content.
I absolutely adore this book, and the fact that I can still be friends with Lydia, even if she found the book "just ok" is a testament to the length and strength of our connection. Cause not loving Rainbow Rowell should quite possibly be some sort of deal breaker. Are Lincoln's actions in the book a bit uncomfortable? Yes. This is addressed within the story. Is the fact that he falls in love with Beth without even knowing what she looks like still super romantic? Yes. Does it all possibly end a little bit too conveniently? Probably, but that's a staple of the romantic comedy genre.
Rereading Attachments made me feel the need to immediately listen to my audiobook copies of Fangirl and then Carry On right after. I have no intention of reviewing either of those books again, because frankly, having just returned to work a little over a week ago, I'm pretty much constantly tired and it's a miracle I'm getting any reading, let alone blogging done. Suffice to say, I still love them just as much as before too. I will at some point be at a place where I'm mentally and emotionally strong enough to tackle Eleanor's home life in Eleanor & Park again and then I will reread that too. But I'm not there yet.
Judging a book by its cover: I have the UK paperback of this book, and much prefer it to the original American edition with the paperclips and empty office chairs. I like the bright colours and the little silhouettes, although I'm not entirely sure why the little man character is wearing a suit, something I'm pretty sure Lincoln never had to do, working the night shift and mainly reading other people's e-mails.
Crossposted on Cannonball Read.