James Patterson has published quite a number of books already, and I understand that Sundays at Tiffany’s is his first book published on a new genre, but is this an excuse enough to cover the fact that it was badly written?
If there was one good thing that came out of reading this book was that I found out that I had an imaginary friend when I was a child. I only knew about this now that I am 21 years old, while my eldest brother was teasing me, which made Patterson’s claim that all children forget their imaginary friend into adulthood.
Jane Margaux had a lonely childhood. She spent her early years trailing behind her mother was either busy with their business or searching for the perfect husband. Michael made it all bearable for her. He was handsome, sweet, kind, and he made Jane feel special, until he left her when she turned nine just as all imaginary friends do. Jane was bound to forget him, Michael said. Only, she didn’t. Only, years after, they see each other again, and as before, it was as if they picked up where they last fell off.
Now, there was the premise of a beautiful love story, but it fell too short in inducing the warm fuzzy feeling it was supposed to give. At some point, it came a little too close to the movie City of Angels that I had to put it down and breath deeply to stop myself from ripping a page or two. It’s bad enough that I found the ending of that movie a little too stupid, but to have it read on a novel that I was developing a heavy dislike already is just too much.
Fine. I had high expectations with the novel, especially that it followed a Foer in my reading list. Foer had his amazing way with words and Patterson, well, narrated it well.
I had my chick lit phase in high school, and in no condescending manner, I liked it. I know for a fact that had I chosen to try and read a book of the same genre again, I might not go gaga over it, but I will rekindle that old flame with cheesy love stories again. I would have recognized that feeling again, but I felt nothing with Patterson.
The language was too bland. It lacked quite everything. I recognized the attempts to give off the warm feeling of love, but I kept looking for something else.
“Maybe beauty, true beauty is overwhelming , it goes straight to our hearts . Maybe it makes us feel emotions that are lacked away inside.” He blinked and give a bashful smile. “Sorry. I’ve been watching Oprah again.”
The problem with this is, I knew that this was the cue for that giggly moment. There was Michael, being cute and adorable, showing his sensitive side. It was the part wherein, had I seen the movie, it would focus on his handsome face breaking into a sly smile. I was supposed to squeak or produce some girly sound, but I didn’t.
Everything felt too orchestrated, or worse, too hard.
“What is happening to me?” he whispered. He’d cut himself shaving, knocked down two guys in the same day (though both had deserved it), and now he was crying. In fact, and overwhelming sadness was overtaking him. So this is what sorrow feels like. This is the ache in the heart, the catch in the throat, that he had heard and read so much about.
The promise was there. I have vested interest in the novel, because for one, I had an imaginary friend whom I wish is a handsome guy, just in case I meet him again in the future; two, Jane is a playwright, and I think it’s awesome being a writer; three, a good friend has been lusting over the novel and I had this feeling that I would like this novel. All these were trampled over the fact that the only thing that I enjoyed in the novel was the asshole boyfriend of Jane, Hugh McGrath, who has to be one of the biggest asshole ever, I love him.
“Jane, I know we can be great again. I’ve got the ring, and you’ve got the movie. Let’s make a trade, sweetheart. Do we have a deal?”
That was the most ridiculous wedding proposal ever. I knew I had to hate the guts of the guy, but I’m sorry, he was a doll, and when he’s already my doll, I’d have him around me always and I shall pick an extremity that he has whenever I feel bad, since he deserved it for being such a jerk.
If it’s any consolation, I think Sundays at Tiffany’s won in inducing reactions in me, although they were never the proper reactions. Heh.