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What We're Reading #6

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


It is July 20th: time for out What We're Reading Linky Party.  Bonnie and I co-host this party every month, and Bonnie is hosting it at her blog, The Boatwright Family.

Over the weekend I read Summer Rental by Mary Kay Andrews.  I have read several of her books, and just a few months ago I read The Fixer Upper, which I loved.  You can read my post about it here.

This book starts out fairly promising.  Andrews' characters always have strong, individual voices, and the three friends in this book are unique and intriguing characters.  Their names are Ellis, Dorie, and Julia.  They are childhood friends who attended an all-girls' Catholic school in their hometown of Savannah, Georgia.  Now they are in their mid-thirties, and they have not visited each other in a couple of years.   In order to reconnect, they rent a house in the Outer Banks of North Carolina for the entire month of August.  Each woman is facing a crisis invovling very difficult decisions, and all three women have enjoyed success in their respective fields.  What I don't understand about their story is why the women make very poor, stupid decisions throughout the book.

Stupid Decision #1:   Dories's older sister had committed to joining the three friends, but she backs out at the last minute.  They rent a larger house for four rather than three, and Dorie budgets her trip based on her sister's share of the rent.  Dorie's poor decision is that she asks a stranger she meets in a diner to rent the extra bedroom from them: a woman who seems rather shady.  Her name is Maryn, and she does bring trouble with her.

Stupid Decision #2:   Ellis becomes attracted to the broker than broke landlord of Ebbtide, the house they are renting.  His name is Ty, and he is a law school dropout, surfer dude, and day trader.  The wise woman would turn away from his abs and run like heck.

Stupid Decision #3:   Julia wants to spend a whole month away from a successful man who loves her and wants to marry her.  She also loves him, but she is acting immature.

Although these women are supposed to be relatively smart, they revert back to immature, whining, cursing adolescents when they are together.   I was so disappointed by the cursing in this book.  I did not realize that mature, successful, thirty-something women behaved this way. To me, it seems way out of character.  I did not find their immature antics cute at all.  I actually find myself wincing at the things they do.

If you want to read a fun book by Andrews, please read The Fixer Upper. Normally I do not post about books I don't like, but there has been a lot of talk about this one, and I like several of Andrews' other books.  I felt almost obligated to warn you about these stupid and immature characters .  Do you know what Julia, Ellis, Dorie, and Maryn need?  A sassy gay friend.  I expected him to appear at any moment and say, "What!  What!  What are you doing?  You are a stupid b*tch!"  Warning, he says the "b" word!

Please share your summer reading with us!


Until next time...

Happy reading!
Ricki Jill


  1. I usually want to give books based in NC a fair chance, but this reminds me of so many other books I've given up on wanting the characters to be realistic. I appreciate a thoughtful negative review more than a hasty positive one any day.

    I think I'm holding out and will post a review for the book I'm reading now in August. I'm only halfway through and think it deserves a full reading before judgment.

  2. I have really enjoyed her books. Haven't read Summer Rental yet but it's on my list. :)

  3. I read it a couple weeks ago and thought it was good, yeah they acted crazy while together and there was some things I wouldn't do. I'm like Charlotte, one of the characters on Sex and the City, always the cautious one:)

  4. I have been having the best time reading this summer! I've been averaging a book a week. LOVE!

    This one sounds really interesting.

  5. This wasn't my favorite of hers, by far. It lacked something. I wish she'd write another book about Weezie and her gang (from Savannah Blues and Savannah Breeze).

  6. I just finished The Fixer Upper (which I loved) & was looking forward to reading this. Hmmm...not so sure now.

  7. Nothing makes me angrier then when I am reading a book and I see a character fall into a trap that I had foreseen. Lame writing. We want strong, independent women, at least those heading that way. I've heard of the Fixer Upper and I will look for that.


  8. Hi my friend guess what arrived in the post this morning, yes my beautiful cherry card, you are so thoughtful and it is much appreciated.
    I think it is important to post our negative thoughts as well as positive because we must give our honest point of view however hard it may be, so thankyou. I do not know this author at all but if I ever come across her books I now know which to choose.

  9. I joined in this week..and I was hesitant to say what I've been reading! These are not the best books I've ever read...but they are entertaining! I'll put the one you DO recommend on my reading list! Hugs! ♥

  10. Oh! Thanks for the share. I will avoid this one! :P


  11. Well, what a great review!
    As someone who wishes she could live in the Carolina's with weekly trips to Savannah if possible, I thought this is a book for me!
    I'm glad though, that I read all of your post because like you I can't abide stupid women who make bad choices.
    (Can't say I haven't made a few myself, but hindsight is 20/20 vision they say)
    So, I'll avoid this one but look out for The Fixer Upper since you liked that one, I'll probably like it too.

  12. Love that video! Yep I was so disappointed in that book. I love the idea of all the girls at the beach but I thought this book was just pretty dull. I didn't really like the characters. Hate to say it but I totally would have fallen for the bum at the beach but I could not for the life of me see why he would have been attracted to Ellis.

    I kept hoping they were all going to start fixing up the house themselves instead of the fairy tale ending. And the Maryn character...I just thought that didn't really go any where interesting.

    Shallow characters...not very well drawn out.


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I'm Ricki Jill. Welcome! I'm honored that you're reading my blog. I enjoy sharing my creative lifestyle @ The Bookish Dilettante. For more information about my blog, please read the Start Here page. Thank-you for stopping by, and I hope you'll consider following me via email.

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