Book Review: First You Try Everything by Jane McCafferty
January 17, 2012 8 Comments
Genre: contemporary fiction
I got this book: ARC for review from the publishers, Harper
First Published: 2012 (January 17th)
I read this in: English, the original language
Number of pages: 304
First You Try Everything: What it is About
Evvie and Ben are a middle aged couple that have drifted apart. They don’t have children and live quite separate lives. Separate enough for Ben to start an affair with Lauren, a single mother.
Not much later, he moves out and Evvie is left on her own. She doesn’t know Ben has found someone else and expects them to get back together again. She phones and visits him much more often than he is happy with.
She is desperate get back together and eventually, she finds a drastic way to get Ben back again.
The book is told form the perspectives of Evvie and Ben, and, in one chapter, from a secondary character’s view.
First You Try Everything: What I thought
4 stars (out of 5) This book was both interesting and depressing. It took me a long time to start caring a little for Evvie. She’s strange, even before she falls apart. She was rather childish and dependent and I couldn’t connect with her at all.
Ben was a more reasonable character that I could understand. I think he could have tried a bit harder to stay with Evvie, but as she was acting rather odd, it was no surprise that he left her. He still cared for her (and probably felt guilty) and was patient with her when she phoned or came by his work or new home.
Evvie’s solution to get Ben back was very original but clearly something you’d only find in a book. Ben’s reaction, again, was very natural and reasonable, I thought.
I liked the ending, when Evvie developed an unlikely friendship.
Not for the newly-divorced, this book gives insight in the breakdown of a marriage and the consequent breakdown of one of the ex-partners. A well-written emotional roller coaster.