Book Review – “Then Came You” by Jennifer Weiner

  Title:  Then Came You

Author:  Jennifer Weiner

ISBN:  9781451617733

Publisher:  Simon and Schuster

Synopsis (from bn.com):

Jules Strauss is a Princeton senior on a full scholarship who plans on selling her “pedigree” eggs to help save her father from addiction.

Annie Barrow, a struggling Pennsylvania housewife, thinks that carrying another woman’s child will help her recover a sense of purpose and will bring in some much-needed cash.

India Bishop, thirty-eight (really, forty-three) and recently married to the wealthy Marcus Croft, yearns for a baby for reasons that have more to do with money than with love. When her attempts at pregnancy fail, she turns to Jules and Annie to make her dreams come true.

But each of their plans is thrown into disarray when Bettina, Marcus’s privileged daughter, becomes suspicious that her new stepmother is not what she seems . . .

Told with Jennifer Weiner’s trademark wit and sharp observations, Then Came You is a hilarious, tender, and timely tale that explores themes of class and entitlement, surrogacy and charity, the rights of a parent and the measure of a mother.

My thoughts:  I recently won this book from a giveaway from a great blog chicklitcentraltheblog.blogspot.com.  Please go check out this great blog!

First off, let me say that this is in fact the very first Jennifer Weiner book that I have ever read.  I was very excited to get it in the mail and start reading as I have heard great things about Jennifer Weiner and read great things about her books.  Based on this book alone, I wouldn’t necessarily go back and give any of her other books a chance.  I really, really wanted to love this book, but I can’t say that I did.  I am kind of neutral about the whole thing.  I didn’t love it, I didn’t hate it, it was just alright!

Each chapter in the book is written from the perspective of a different character.  I do enjoy this writing style, but found myself not really feeling anything intensely about any of the four main characters.  I somehow didn’t feel connected to these women and therfore their experiences just fell flat for me.

The book felt quite “Jodi Picoult”-like in that it dealt with a number of difficult issues – surrogacy, infertility, egg donation, motherhood – but simply didn’t have the grace and style one finds in Jodi Picoult’s novels.

I really wish that the four characters would have started meeting and interacting earlier in the book.  For me I think this would have added a certain depth to the characters and made me feel more connected to them.  The way it is written, their stories don’t really start connecting until the latter parts of the book, and then the whole story seems rather abrupt in its ending.

I hated the ending of the book.  I found myself reading the ending and going, “What? Oh come on.” Not only did I just personally not like the way the author chose to end the book, I found that the ending really seemed too neatly finished.  The whole story with its difficult topics, just felt like it was tied up with a neat little bow, everything was fine, and it ended.  Too neat and tidy of an ending for me.

So, all in all certainly not my favorite chick lit book and author.  Given that I have read many positive reviews on some of Jennifer Weiner’s other books, I may go back and try her again.  The jury is still out on that.

And remember,

Books Are Life,

Heather

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Filed under Book Reviews, Chick Lit, Fiction, Giveaways

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