Tuesday, 24 October 2017

It Only Happens in the Movies - Holly Bourne

Hello!


I picked this book pretty much right away when it came out, seeing how impressed I was with Am I Normal Yet? by the same author when I read it two months ago. This book is not a part of The Spinster Club series, but a stand-alone story. Like Am I Normal Yet?, this book also had a really cool feminism aspect that I really appreciated.

It Only Happens in the Movies is a lot of fun. It's the story of Audrey, who's father left her family for another woman, who's mum has been drinking a lot since then, who's boyfriend left her in a traumatic manner and who no longer believes in romance movies. She gets a job at an independent cinema and meets her coworker Harry, who's a bad boy womanizer and everything she doesn't need in her life, and yet...

This book is many kinds of lovely. It talks about real issues that come with being young but also about what love and friendship are and when you should or shouldn't give a person a second chance. It was also a surprising book; I thought I knew what was happening, but then there were two separate plot twists that I hadn't anticipated, and it felt like a refreshing experience overall. It was also a very earnest story about what it's like to be young.

I liked Audrey a lot as a character. She's very shaken by what's been going on in her life and even angry about it sometimes, but she didn't get on my nerves too often. I appreciate that. All the side characters were also very much alive - this is one of those books were everyone except her is a side character, really. This is her story.

I liked the themes: there were many important messages I think people often need to hear. What if your parent just doesn't take care of you? What if you have a life planned for yourself and all of a sudden the base it's gone and you let it slip away? We're often told to decide everything as teenagers but in reality I'm in unversity and I still don't really have the answers. That's okay. I think we should talk about that more often.

I decided to give this book a 4/5 because while I did like it a lot, it was not quite as good as Am I Normal Yet? and it was ultimately kind of forgettable. I finished it maybe a week ago but today I struggle to remember what it was even about.

Less importantly: this is kind of unbelievable, but this book is the second British (English, more specifically) contemporary book I've read lately (the first one was Me Before You, and yes, I mentioned this in my review) in which the main character dislikes films with subtitles. Seriously, my not-native-English-speaker-self is so offended that there's a privilege in not wanting to indulge in other cultures like that. Ew. Audrey even states that she's never watched a subtitled film before, but still claims to love cinema???? Please explain.

For the Helmet 2017 reading challenge I put this in category 18: The are no less than four words in a book's name.

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