It’s a mini review! I’m clearing out my review queue of all the books I can’t seem to convince myself to finish, for one reason or another. That doesn’t mean these are negative reviews, it simply means that something isn’t compelling me to keep reading at the moment. Maybe I’ll go back to them another day, maybe I won’t!
How far did I get? I solidly read 33%, then started skimming. It had already lost me by that point, but once the COVID stuff kicked in, I was completely over it.
Why did I stop? Simply put – don’t name something Romantic Comedy and advertise it AS a romantic comedy if the romance and comedy are almost non-existent, or not the primary focus of the book. In the portion I read, it was basically a behind the scenes look at what goes into putting on an episode of SNL. There were huge portions that did not involve the love interest, and zero chemistry when they were together. The next chapter (there are only three total) involves exchanging emails, etc, between the characters, which is usually catnip for me. But I was just so done with this by that point that I didn’t even want to get into the COVID portion.
Was I enjoying it initially? Not really. I do enjoy watching SNL and the insight into that was interesting for a short time, but it became so mundane and monotonous that I lost interest. It was also clear that the tone would be neither comedic nor overtly romantic, so I’m definitely not the right reader for this.
Would I finish this? No.
Who would I recommend this to? Fiction fans, not romance lovers. I don’t read general fiction, so I can’t tell you how I would rate this as that. But it certainly didn’t hold my interest, and a great book should be able to do that.
Sally Milz is a sketch writer for The Night Owls, a late-night live comedy show that airs every Saturday. With a couple of heartbreaks under her belt, she’s long abandoned the search for love, settling instead for the occasional hook-up, career success, and a close relationship with her stepfather to round out a satisfying life.
But when Sally’s friend and fellow writer Danny Horst begins dating Annabel, a glamorous actress who guest-hosted the show, he joins the not-so-exclusive group of talented but average-looking and even dorky men at the show—and in society at large—who’ve gotten romantically involved with incredibly beautiful and accomplished women. Sally channels her annoyance into a sketch called the Danny Horst Rule, poking fun at this phenomenon while underscoring how unlikely it is that the reverse would ever happen for a woman.
Enter Noah Brewster, a pop music sensation with a reputation for dating models, who signed on as both host and musical guest for this week’s show. Dazzled by his charms, Sally hits it off with Noah instantly, and as they collaborate on one sketch after another, she begins to wonder if there might actually be sparks flying. But this isn’t a romantic comedy—it’s real life. And in real life, someone like him would never date someone like her . . . right?
With her keen observations and trademark ability to bring complex women to life on the page, Curtis Sittenfeld explores the neurosis-inducing and heart-fluttering wonder of love, while slyly dissecting the social rituals of romance and gender relations in the modern age.
About the Author:
Curtis Sittenfeld is the bestselling author of the novels Prep, The Man of My Dreams, American Wife, and Sisterland, which have been translated into twenty-five languages. Her nonfiction has been published widely, including in The New York Times, The Atlantic, Time, and Glamour, and broadcast on public radio’s This American Life. A native of Cincinnati, she currently lives with her family in St. Louis.
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I agree, it’s not a romantic comedy but I loved the behind the scenes stuff AND how she incorporated the pandemic into their romance. It was well done and I enjoyed it. I actually recommended it to my sister and she’s a tough critic and she liked it too. Actually, I listened to the audiobook so maybe that’s why I liked it more? Thanks for your review I always like to see everyone’s opinions. Sometimes it’s really just that the book may have been right for me at that time and it wasn’t for you. Simple. 🙂
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Yeah, I think romance readers are likely going to be disappointed in it overall, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a good book! More of a marketing issue than anything. I’m a reader who doesn’t connect if there isn’t much romance, so that why I struggled. Glad you enjoyed it though, it’s definitely popular!
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