Thursday, January 23, 2014

Attachments (Book Review)

Thursday, January 23, 2014 2:40 AM with 25 comments

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Attachments

Author: Rainbow Rowell
Publisher: Dutton
Release date: April 14, 2011
Number of Pages: 336

Synopsis from Goodreads:

 "Hi, I'm the guy who reads your e-mail, and also, I love you . . . "

Beth Fremont and Jennifer Scribner-Snyder know that somebody is monitoring their work e-mail. (Everybody in the newsroom knows. It's company policy.) But they can't quite bring themselves to take it seriously. They go on sending each other endless and endlessly hilarious e-mails, discussing every aspect of their personal lives.

Meanwhile, Lincoln O'Neill can't believe this is his job now- reading other people's e-mail. When he applied to be "internet security officer," he pictured himself building firewalls and crushing hackers- not writing up a report every time a sports reporter forwards a dirty joke.

When Lincoln comes across Beth's and Jennifer's messages, he knows he should turn them in. But he can't help being entertained-and captivated-by their stories.

By the time Lincoln realizes he's falling for Beth, it's way too late to introduce himself.

What would he say . . . ?


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MY THOUGHTS:
  
After I graduated from college I read chick-lit almost exclusively. I was an English major, so by the time I graduated I was completely over Victorian fiction and writing 30 page papers and John Donne poetry. To this day I still hate William Faulkner with a passion usually reserved for pure evil. I was thrilled to find light, fun reads about girls my age written by authors I really connected with like Jane Green, Sophie Kinsella, Jennifer Wiener, Meg Cabot, Sarah Mlynowski, etc, etc. While I'll still read books by my favorite chick-lit (I hate that term by the way) authors, like the ones I just listed, I rarely seek out new authors who are writing in this genre. Rainbow Rowell's Attachments reaffirmed my love of these fun books. Attachments was cute and fun and a bit melancholy and I adored it. 

Attachments is the story of Lincoln O'Neill, a man who is stuck in life. After living as a perpetual student for the past decade, racking up degrees he doesn't use, Lincoln has moved back in to his childhood home with his mother, an overbearing, yet loving woman. Lincoln is somewhat ashamed to be living back home, but because he has no real friends and is far from being involved with anyone, he doesn't really see a reason to move out of the house when he mother is so obviously thrilled to have him there even though his much older half sister constantly tells him he needs to move out and live his life.

Lincoln gets a job at a newspaper who has finally given its employees internet assess. The year is 1999, just to be clear. Lincoln's job is to sort through the emails and searches that have been flagged by the company's system due to key words being used (like, you know, porn and foul language). He reads the emails and decides whether or not the person is abusing the system and if they need to be given a warning. Lincoln hates spying on people, but the job is easy (super easy, like, he has to work maybe an hour of an eight hour shift) and he doesn't really have anywhere else to go.

Two women who work for the newspaper, Jennifer and Beth, have emails that are consistently flagged and stored into the system and Lincoln finds himself getting more and more enthralled by their lives as he reads the emails the two send back and forth. He never writes them up and always clears the messages from the catch-all system. He knows he should give them a warning--or at least that he should stop reading their emails--but he just can't bring himself to stop. As he gets to know more and  more about the friends, he finds himself starting to fall for one of them.

Jennifer is a married woman who's husband is desperate to start a family. Unsure of whether or not she wants to ever be a mother, she has been putting off having any discussions or making any decisions. She knows that she loves her husband and doesn't want to lose him, though.

Beth has been in a relationship with a musician for years. She knows that there is a possibility that he will never actually settle down with her, but they have been together for so long that she is comfortable with how things are. She starts to doubt her life a bit more when her younger sister announces her engagement.

This novel is simply wonderful. I loved and cared for all three characters. I loved that we saw Lincoln and his life and got to know the two friends through their email--the same way Lincoln was getting to know them. I loved reading the details of Lincoln's first relationship with a girl he dated in high school and how that relationship is still affecting him. I loved the friendship he strikes up with the older woman at the newspaper who runs the vending machines.

I'm so glad I picked this one up. I really struggled reading Eleanor and Park (I'm sorry I know it is much beloved) and actually ended up not finishing it even though I tried 3 different times to get into it, but I really enjoyed Fangirl and was so happy I gave it a try...which lead me to give this one a try. It held my attention the entire time I was reading it and I loved the style that combines emails and narrative. If you've enjoyed Rainbow Rowell's previous novels, you have to pick this one up. If you haven't, then this debut is the perfect place to start. Highly Recommend.

25 comments:

  1. I'm only JUST reading some Rainbow Rowell (I hear everyone raving about her so much, so I knew I had to read something !) Though I'm reading Eleanor & Park... and loving it. ;) I don't usually read Adult books, but I'd like to read Attachments.

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    1. I'm definitely in the minority with E&P. I know most of my friends really loved it. I really liked Fangirl and Attachments and I can't wait for her new book coming out this spring. I hope you like this if you do decide to pick it up.

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  2. I went through a phase where I read a lot of chick-lit and then a phase where I read mostly "literary" type books. I guess now I'm in my YA phase, but I recently read Attachments and really enjoyed it too. I did like the mix of e-mails and narrative, it was such a great way to tell this story and it totally worked. And I loved Lincoln and completely connected with his character, which doesn't always happen when a guy is the MC. Glad you loved it! ~Pam

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    1. I went through a literary phase, too. I've been trying to branch out a bit more with my reading. I love YA, but I like adult books, too. Right now I'm reading a pretty good combination of books across genres/age groups which is working out for me pretty well. I don't want to limit myself to just one thing. Lincoln was awesome and I loved the writing style. I'm really excited for her new adult book coming out. I'm glad you enjoyed this one, too!

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  3. I enjoyed FANGIRL and I've heard ATTACHMENTS is totally different and probably better, so I definitely need to read it soon. Thanks for the review!

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    1. I really liked them both. They are different, but not like: I can't believe it's the same author. Both have a kind of melancholy to them. I hope you enjoy it if you do pick it up!

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  4. I loved this book so much! It was just really...wholesome and, like you, reminded me of 'chick-lit' of old. It was a bit Meg Cabot Boy Meets Girl (in the best way possible), wasn't it? The characters were very warm and real - just like Fangirl. I wasn't a huge fan of E&P either but I think its strength was the friendship aspect - and Park's family - and this seems to be Rainbow Rowell's thing. I can't wait to read her next one!

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    1. Yes! I adore that "Boy" series of Cabot's. Those are some of my old favorites. The characters were very warm and relatable. I can't wait for her next one, either. Thanks for stopping by!

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  5. I definitely go through reading phases. I had a chick-lit phase and a mystery phase and I guess I am in a YA phase.
    I have this on request at the library and I can't wait to try it!
    Thanks so much for stopping by! Jen @ YA Romantics

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    1. I go in phases, but I've been trying to mix it up a bit. YA is definitely my fav, but I like to read a memoir or adult book every once in a while to remind myself the world isn't limited to just YA. I hope you love this once you get your hands on it!

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  6. What timing! My review of this is going up in a few days, haha. I enjoyed it too, and I actually really want to read Fangirl. Attachments is my first Rainbow Rowell, and I was so not disappointed. :D

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    1. Yay! I'm glad you enjoyed this one, as well! It was fun without being overly cutesy. Let me know when your review goes up. Thanks for stopping by!

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  7. I was wondering how this book was. Eleanor & Park just did not seem like my kind of novel but I loved Fangirl. I'm so glad you enjoyed this one! Lincoln sounds kind of creepy but if he builds an actual relationship with those women then I guess it's okay. I think I'll have to give this one a try eventually! Great review :)

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    1. He isn't! I know it does kind of sound that way and his actions aren't great, but I was never once like: this guy is shady. It's his job to read the emails and he hates that reading emails is his job. I hope you do enjoy it if you pick it up. Thanks, Chris!

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  8. Great that you loved it so much!! I really regret having read Fangirl already - I feel like most people like it so much better than Eleanor & Park - but I'm still confident I'll like that book, as well. And then there's Attachments which I'm really intrigued about! One of my resolutions this year was to read more adult books and I feel like this one would be the perfect start!

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    1. I liked Fangirl and this one way more. I've been trying to work more adult novels back into my reading pile, too. This one is great. I hope you give it a try. Thanks for stopping by!

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  9. Great review, Nat! Have been meaning to read this one for ages. Seems like the perfect feel good read :)

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    1. Thanks, Trinity! I hope you enjoy it if you do pick it up. It really is a fun book without being overly cutesy. Thanks for stopping by!

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  10. I can't wait to read this, Natalie! I've never been much of a chick-lit (I hate that term, too, by the way) reader. I only sorta liked E&P, but I LOVED Fangirl, so I'm thinking this book will be just what I was hoping for.

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    1. This is definitely more aligned with Fangirl than E&P. I really enjoyed it. I hope you do, too, when you get to it. Thanks for stopping by!

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  11. Attachments does sound like a wonderful, contemporary romance. The spying on emails and the outlandish fun of it all makes me smile. I can understand your totally phasing away from other genres that seemed remotely close to your English Major! Whew- 30 pages!! Glad you enjoyed this one. Wonderful, and thoughtful review, Natalie. :)

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    1. I'm telling you, the papers you have to write as an English major are so brutal. It did teach me how to 1. write huge papers in a day and 2. how to write huge papers on works of literature I haven't read. So at least I have those completely unnecessary skills.
      This is a really fun contemp romance. I'd definitely recommend. Thanks for stopping by!

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  12. This sounds so good, I need to read it already! I also liked that you said that you loved all three of the characters, it makes me happy when I can connect and care for all of the leads in a book! :)
    Great review!

    Alice @ Alice in Readerland

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    1. I really did like all the characters involved. I love it when you can connect with everyone, too. I hope you like this when you do pick it up. Thanks for stopping by!

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  13. I read this book a while ago and I thought it was pretty cute. I've grown to love books solely made up of e-mails and things like that, they're really funny!

    Very nice review! You should try A Girl Like You by Gemma Burgess, it is hands down the best chick lit I've read.

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Hello, there! Thanks for taking the time to comment. I read each and every one and will do my best to respond--usually on your blog instead of on mine. I will, however, always answer direct questions. Due to serious time restraints, this blog is now an award free zone, but I appreciate the thought!