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detailmuse
Posts: 180
Registered: ‎01-24-2008
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine

[ Edited ]
Didn't it seem out of character that savvy Sadie divulged the whole Tuck/Caitlin story to a stranger, especially a federal agent? Nevertheless, I'm happy they're in a relationship. Although -- ***no known spoiler coming (because I haven't yet read beyond Ch 9), but my mind is wandering ahead*** -- it worries me that he's FBI, and they're in NYC, and 9/11 is approaching...
Message Edited by detailmuse on 01-14-2009 10:03 AM
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LibraryGirlReads
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Registered: ‎12-04-2008
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine

Chapters 6 through 9 were more interesting to me than the beginning of the book.  Maybe I've gotten used to the writing style or maybe it was the characters that were the focus.

 

I found Sadie's section interesting because I would have thought her a much stronger character based on the information we received in other chapters.  However, she is just as lost as all the others.  I found the scene with Caitlen frustrating because they overanalyzed the whole situation.  Bottom line is that Caitlen is having an affair with Lil's husband and that is wrong.  I am disappointed that it seems that Sadie did not tell Lil about the affair even though it would have been an incredibly difficult conversation.

 

Beth is finally analyzing her life and making some tough choices.  After reading Dave's chapter it is clear that he does not have his life together and doesn't have the same feelings toward Beth as she has for him.  However, we never really learn much about Will to know if she is making a better choice.  We didn't see any of their relationship between the first sexual encounter and engagement and we miss everything between shopping for wedding dresses and them actually being married.  The large chunks of missing time are giving me difficulties.

 

Dave's chapter was very intersting.  It was good to hear from one of the guys.  He certainly seems possessive of the girls in the group but mainly in that he doesn't want anyone else to have them.  I don't think he really has feelings for Emily but simply doesn't want to lose her time and affection to Curtis.

 

I still get the sense that the group is really made up of people who just know each other rather than true friends as they clearly let large amounts of time pass between contact and they keep many secrets from each other.

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jpohedra
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎12-18-2007
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine

I completely agree.  The author has taken on way too many characters and too many story lines.  I am finding it hard to truly appreciate any of the characters because I feel like I've only been given a peripheral view into their lives.  I felt overwhelmed fromthe first few pages of this book; trying to get the characters names right, their individual personalities, nuances, and relationships to one another and this feeling never went away.  I felt like the author jumped from storyline to storyline and year to year without ever letting me get to know each of the characters which made me care less and less about them and about reading on to find out more.  I believe the potential was there to craft these characters into a great story, but the writer, in my opinion, missed the mark.

 

On a postive note, as far as writing style, I will say that I felt the author did a good job of giving each character his or her own individual voice.  I found the writing to be very witty and humerous, at times, and true to the era. 

~Jennifer~
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Re76
Posts: 26
Registered: ‎11-18-2008
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine


I agree with you (Bookworm). I finished the book, but often found myself confusing the details and individuals. I kept waiting for the developement of the individuals and more of the actual "story" instead felt like I was missing pages that further explained what was actually was occurring or had occurred.
Renee
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nmccarthy
Posts: 35
Registered: ‎12-29-2007
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine

While the characters are all struggling between their desire to achieve their independence and career aspirations and their desire to form a serious and committed relationship with a lifetime partner, they seem to have the ability to share and express their anxieties, frustrations and dreams.

 

Except Dave. Dave seems to lack the skills to communicate his true feelings, which tends to lead to angry outbursts or inappropriate and immature responses. I can't decide if he is narcistic or if he just hasn't found a woman he truely loves yet. All of his relationships seem to revolve around what the other person can do for him; I don't see any empathy in Dave. 

 

But it was nice to hear from the "males" of the book. I am enjoying reliving my post college year dreams and frustrations through the characters in the book, especially through the eyes of a different generation. Chapter One was definitely tough to slog through, but I'm glad I stuck with the book.

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meme1
Posts: 106
Registered: ‎12-17-2007
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine


Re76 wrote:

I agree with you (Bookworm). I finished the book, but often found myself confusing the details and individuals. I kept waiting for the developement of the individuals and more of the actual "story" instead felt like I was missing pages that further explained what was actually was occurring or had occurred.
Renee
I agree with this, too.  I missed the details that led up to an event, such as Beth's marriage.  This isn't to say that I'm not enjoying the story because I am; but I wonder if there are too many characters to fill in all of the details.

 

meme

~~ Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly.

~~ Be careful reading health books. You may die of a misprint. Mark Twain
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katknit
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine

It does get confusing,  trying to keep the characters straight. I think it's because  the chapters on the individuals are so lengthy.
No two persons ever read the same book. [Edmund Wilson]
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katknit
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Registered: ‎01-27-2007
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine

You hit the nail on the head with Dave. There's something keeping him terribly repressed and deluded about himself. And he seems to have a serious drinking problem.


nmccarthy wrote:

While the characters are all struggling between their desire to achieve their independence and career aspirations and their desire to form a serious and committed relationship with a lifetime partner, they seem to have the ability to share and express their anxieties, frustrations and dreams.

 

Except Dave. Dave seems to lack the skills to communicate his true feelings, which tends to lead to angry outbursts or inappropriate and immature responses. I can't decide if he is narcistic or if he just hasn't found a woman he truely loves yet. All of his relationships seem to revolve around what the other person can do for him; I don't see any empathy in Dave. 

 

 


 

 

No two persons ever read the same book. [Edmund Wilson]
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m3girl
Posts: 194
Registered: ‎03-02-2007
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine

Happy Thursday from freezing Chicago where the temps have not gone over 0 degrees so far today!

I looked back on my first posting in this section and noticed there was nothing there....not sure how that happened as I entered it all the same as in the past.

Anyway - I have read chapters six and seven so far and here are my comments.... 

CH 6:

I like Sadie - so much better than Beth!  This chapter grabbed from the start because I can relate to her feelings about the days of the weekend.  Sundays can be depressing once you start thinking about all of the things to do during the week ahead.  I try hard not to think about those things but sometimes it happens.  So I like her from the start and think that might be why Beth is at first jealous of Will's attention on Sadie.  People like Sadie - perhaps a whole lot more than they like Beth and she knows it.  She enjoys her job, seems competent and works hard - admirable traits (not necessarily shared with Beth).

Sadie does seem to have a weak side and might be easily manipulated as Caitlin lures her over to discuss her affair with Tuck.  I would have said come over here, b**ch if you want to talk - but then that's me - not as nice as Sadie.

Caitlin seems lonely.  She claims to be a feminist but really isn't. She has let her husband take over her life with the vegan lifestyle, and the protests...but she seems to like the comfort of knowing that he has money - whether they are using it now or not.  She seems to have lost herself in her husband's life.

Will Sadie tell LIl?

And who is the guy sitting outside watching the building?  It's not the INS - could it be the FBI watching Rob/Caitlin?

This was a quick moving and focused chapter - well done!

 

CH 7:

Another chapter with Sadie!  Or at least that was what I thought at first.  Tuck's been arrested!  Interesting!  Protesting with Rob...

Then we move over to Beth - is she less than interested in the wedding plans because she just doesn't want a big wedding, doesn't really want to marry Will or is too lazy to make and execute the plans?  Or a combination of all of the above?

Perspective shifts from Beth to her mother much more smoothly than in the early chapters.  Seems her mother has the same concerns about Beth and this engagement.  But she also enables some of Beth's actions.

Beth thinks about when Will asked her to marry him - here wear this....what sort of proposal is that?  Is Will really serious?  Is he really that big of a freak?  Why is she settling with him?  Does she really think she needs someone to take care of her?  

And what's this about Dave - does she love him still?  Why doesn't she just talk to him?  It's not like he's an unapproachable guy.

Why isn't she finishing up her dissertation?  See, I really don't like her - she seems spineless.

There is good mother/daughter interaction in this chapter.  It is realistic and the perspective changes seem almost transparent.

 

The story is getting more interesting - it's about time.

 

Susan 

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Bedelia
Posts: 31
Registered: ‎10-20-2007
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine

I'm really tired of the endless minute descriptions of relatives and "sideline" people.  It doesn't add to the plot at all. Details should be writen to enhance - not just to fill up pages and make a longer book. 
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blkeyesuzi
Posts: 730
Registered: ‎01-26-2008
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine

[ Edited ]

fordmg wrote:

booksJT wrote:
First of all I thought Sadie's scenes with Caitlin were odd. If she was Lil's friend she should have told her about the affair or completely avoided Caitlin. Instead she meets with this woman to discuss her friends realtionship with her husband.  At this point I don't consider her a friend of Lil's. It was as if Caitlin was trying to persuade her to become her friend instead of Lil's. Caitlin's  explanation as to why she was having this affair didn't make sense and Sadie should have seen through it. Even if she didn't want to say anything she should have avoided discussing Lil with Catilin. I am glad to see that Beth finally realized what type of person Dave really was. He was the one holding her back from finding happiness some where else. I found Dave's character to be a product of society that believes that they have certain entitlements.  His disppointments in  life led to a less meaningful realtionship with Meredith. This was the one person he thought he could have a life with him.

 

I agree that this chapter is strange.  I don't know if I think Sadie should tell Lil about the afair with Caitlin, we don't really know how serious the afair is.  Maybe just a one time thing.  Is Caitlin an believable character?   I don't understand why Sadie went there in the first place, and why did she stay as long as she did.  The description of Caitlin's appartment was disgusting (the appartment, not the description).  I wouldn't spend 5 minutes there.  Just spit out what you want to say, and let me out of there.

MG


I totally agree that these chapters were odd.  They certainly gave me insight as to who the real Caitlin may be after all.  She's a little scattered and grasping for any hold it seems to keep from drowning, perhaps.  She seems to be coming unhinged.  My impression as I read that part was that she was a drowning person and she was grabbing onto people - first Tuck, now Sadie.

 

When Sadie walked in on Caitlin and Tuck at the party, I knew that something was probably going on, but Sadie had no proof. REally, all she saw was 2 people in a room together, it might have been anything. Until she heard the confession from Caitlin, there was nothing Sadie could tell Lil.  After the meeting with Caitlin however, it was up to Sadie to decide how she would handle the information.  I'm not sure I would be able to keep that kind of thing from my friend based on our friendship....and I'm having difficulty with Sadie's decision, based on the friendship I  believed they had.  Perhaps more depth on these relationships might have helped.  I have to admit that I feel like these relationships have fallen a little short for me so far.  I really haven't gotten much below the surface on any of them as it pertains to their relationships with each other.  They all feel like islands to me, really.

 

I have to say that the meeting between Sadie and Caitlin was well written.  Just thinking about it makes my eyes itch! It had an air of a visit from a social worker ...two complete strangers, an elephant in the room and no one really willing to get to the point.

Message Edited by blkeyesuzi on 01-15-2009 09:52 PM
Suzi

"I still find each day too short for all the thoughts I want to think, all the walks I want to take, all the books I want to read, and all the friends I want to see. " --John Burroughs
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bonereader
Posts: 14
Registered: ‎12-04-2008
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine

I agree that the whole meeting between Sadie and Caitlin was a bit odd, but I don't know if I agree with the assessment that Caitlin is a woman of desperation. She may be miserable, but I see her more as a woman of opportunity. I think she truly believes that she is "above the masses" and far intellectually and socially superior. In my opinion, she seems to latch onto characters who offer her advantage. Then she has to belittle other people to make herself retain that superiority. Calling Sadie "Princess Whitebread" and trying to condescendingly explain to Sadie "How complicated life is..." This is why I don't buy that someone "smart" like Sadie would even give her the time of day, except out of pity. I did applaud Sadie's whole comeback on p.130 "you're just any ordinary woman whose cheating on her husband ...You're not some renegade... You're not glamorous..You're selfish." It's just a shame that this moment seems to pass and was probably forgotten by Caitlin 20 minutes later.

 

The whole vegan thing was driving me crazy, too. I am very respectful of other individuals "life choices," but I find the hypocrisy of this character at times comical. I love the line when Caitlin and Sadie are having coffee and she says they don't have any sugar because it's addictive. I love Sadie's thought "Unlike coffee.."

 

I do kind of understand why Sadie didn't tell Lil about the affair. You just get the sense that at this point, Lil and Sadie really have lost any strong conection they once felt. The whole Tuck relationship has separated Lil from staying truly connected withany of her friends.

 

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KxBurns
Posts: 1,006
Registered: ‎09-06-2007
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine


katknit wrote:

You hit the nail on the head with Dave. There's something keeping him terribly repressed and deluded about himself. And he seems to have a serious drinking problem.


nmccarthy wrote:

While the characters are all struggling between their desire to achieve their independence and career aspirations and their desire to form a serious and committed relationship with a lifetime partner, they seem to have the ability to share and express their anxieties, frustrations and dreams.

 

Except Dave. Dave seems to lack the skills to communicate his true feelings, which tends to lead to angry outbursts or inappropriate and immature responses. I can't decide if he is narcistic or if he just hasn't found a woman he truely loves yet. All of his relationships seem to revolve around what the other person can do for him; I don't see any empathy in Dave. 

 

 


 

 


 

I don't know -- I think he's just young and immature. And it doesn't surprise me that he even lags behind the girls in the group in emotional maturity. I thought the scene with Meredith was just excruciating -- especially coming on the heels of his disastrous attempt to keep Emily from leaving with Curtis, who Dave sees as a younger, but successful, version of himself. With Meredith, Dave invests the relationship with a seriousness and significance that are completely out of touch with reality. I get the sense he thinks he can will things into being as he would like them to be.

 

And why does Curtis inspire such insecurity in Dave? Because it seems like everything comes to Curtis so effortlessly, whereas Dave feels like everything is a struggle for him. He does not recognize that to the rest of us, he seems lazy and ineffectual.

 

The differences between reality and Dave's self-pitying perceptions come down to simple immaturity, in my opinion. It doesn't seem like Dave is a bad person, so I feel like all that needs to change for him to be fine is gaining a little persepctive and opening his eyes to the fact that everyone works hard for what they want. Success in relationships or careers doesn't just magically appear if you want it badly enough, or if you're born lucky, like Curtis.

dg
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dg
Posts: 45
Registered: ‎10-13-2007
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine

I agree, although I had no problem finishing the book.  It was interesting enough when I was reading it but I didn't feel that I couldn't put it down.  I wasn't at all vested in the characters.  I felt that it skimmed over too much and didn't give us enough reason to feel attached to any of the characters.  I felt that it read like a chain of short stories about the same groups of people, was somewhat choppy and not as fluid as I would prefer. 
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C-c-a
Posts: 16
Registered: ‎09-07-2007
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine

I finally finished Chapter 9! This book is just not grabbing me and I have not yet found a character who I really care about.

 

I guess, Dave is a stubbling block for Beth. Although, I believe she is over him and just hasn't  realized it. She wanted to see him at the party and she also wanted him to know she was engaged to Will. She was looking for a reaction but I do not believe she would give up Will and go back to Dave.

 

Dave is odd. The situation with Meredith towards the end of chapter nine was odd. Dave just doesn't know what he wants. Is Dave in love with Sadie?

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nmccarthy
Posts: 35
Registered: ‎12-29-2007
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine


KxBurns wrote:

katknit wrote:

You hit the nail on the head with Dave. There's something keeping him terribly repressed and deluded about himself. And he seems to have a serious drinking problem.


nmccarthy wrote:

While the characters are all struggling between their desire to achieve their independence and career aspirations and their desire to form a serious and committed relationship with a lifetime partner, they seem to have the ability to share and express their anxieties, frustrations and dreams.

 

Except Dave. Dave seems to lack the skills to communicate his true feelings, which tends to lead to angry outbursts or inappropriate and immature responses. I can't decide if he is narcistic or if he just hasn't found a woman he truely loves yet. All of his relationships seem to revolve around what the other person can do for him; I don't see any empathy in Dave. 

 

 


 

 


 

I don't know -- I think he's just young and immature. And it doesn't surprise me that he even lags behind the girls in the group in emotional maturity. I thought the scene with Meredith was just excruciating -- especially coming on the heels of his disastrous attempt to keep Emily from leaving with Curtis, who Dave sees as a younger, but successful, version of himself. With Meredith, Dave invests the relationship with a seriousness and significance that are completely out of touch with reality. I get the sense he thinks he can will things into being as he would like them to be.

 

And why does Curtis inspire such insecurity in Dave? Because it seems like everything comes to Curtis so effortlessly, whereas Dave feels like everything is a struggle for him. He does not recognize that to the rest of us, he seems lazy and ineffectual.

 

The differences between reality and Dave's self-pitying perceptions come down to simple immaturity, in my opinion. It doesn't seem like Dave is a bad person, so I feel like all that needs to change for him to be fine is gaining a little persepctive and opening his eyes to the fact that everyone works hard for what they want. Success in relationships or careers doesn't just magically appear if you want it badly enough, or if you're born lucky, like Curtis.


 

I think late 20's is pretty old to still be immature. If he is just an incredibly late bloomer, then hopefully the right woman and/or a life objective worth fighting for is in his near future. He's a "glass is half empty" kind of guy right now.

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Lil_Irish_Lass
Posts: 163
Registered: ‎11-21-2008
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine

Dave is the stereotypical mid to late 20's male. They want to continue living the wild college life (drinking, sleeping around, no responsibilities); but can no longer get away with it as easily as the did while in college. He doesn't have a drinking problem, he's just a 20 year old; drinking heavily especially in socially stressful situations, is very common and seen as normal in many social circles.

Even though I am female, I can connect with Dave on a level that I haven't been able to reach with any of the female characters. I've known many Dave's... I've dated many Dave's - and they always end the way he and Beth did. Dave has a lot of growing up to do and he's at a slight disadvantage having mostly female friends who of course will be moving on with their lives and maturing emotionally and career wise so when he is taking a little longer to "get there" he's going to get frustrated.

Knowing what you SHOULD do with your life and WANTING to do it are two very different things. It is a feeling so many people feel upon graduating from college after spending 4+ years working towards a degree and then realizing that you have no clue what you want to do with your life. "The trouble was that while he had very strong feelings about what he didn't want to do, he possessed only an extremely vague idea of what he did want to do." (pg 173) - sums up what I am still experiencing 4 years after graduating from college and I think is a main cause of how Dave acts around his friends who he sees struggling - but all in a career they want to be in.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"No sensible man ever engages, unprepared, in a fencing match of words with a woman." - The Woman in White
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blkeyesuzi
Posts: 730
Registered: ‎01-26-2008
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine


bonereader wrote:

I agree that the whole meeting between Sadie and Caitlin was a bit odd, but I don't know if I agree with the assessment that Caitlin is a woman of desperation. She may be miserable, but I see her more as a woman of opportunity. I think she truly believes that she is "above the masses" and far intellectually and socially superior. In my opinion, she seems to latch onto characters who offer her advantage. Then she has to belittle other people to make herself retain that superiority. Calling Sadie "Princess Whitebread" and trying to condescendingly explain to Sadie "How complicated life is..." This is why I don't buy that someone "smart" like Sadie would even give her the time of day, except out of pity. I did applaud Sadie's whole comeback on p.130 "you're just any ordinary woman whose cheating on her husband ...You're not some renegade... You're not glamorous..You're selfish." It's just a shame that this moment seems to pass and was probably forgotten by Caitlin 20 minutes later.

 

The whole vegan thing was driving me crazy, too. I am very respectful of other individuals "life choices," but I find the hypocrisy of this character at times comical. I love the line when Caitlin and Sadie are having coffee and she says they don't have any sugar because it's addictive. I love Sadie's thought "Unlike coffee.."

 

I do kind of understand why Sadie didn't tell Lil about the affair. You just get the sense that at this point, Lil and Sadie really have lost any strong conection they once felt. The whole Tuck relationship has separated Lil from staying truly connected withany of her friends.

 


I guess my opinion on Caitlin is that she is inventing herself...she has no idea who she really is.  She spends all her time inventin a persona that will impress people and raise her above others, while in reality she is a complete mess. She's grasping at anyone who will believe her act.  She's certainly not fooling herself, with the cat-pee stained sofa and what appears to be a life in disarray. 

Suzi

"I still find each day too short for all the thoughts I want to think, all the walks I want to take, all the books I want to read, and all the friends I want to see. " --John Burroughs
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no4daughter
Posts: 73
Registered: ‎10-15-2007
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine

I enjoyed chapters 6 - 9 much more than the first five.  That being said, I am still struggling with keeping the characters straight.  For example, when I read the first sentence of chapter nine that says, "Curtis Lang met Emily Kaplan at a party given by Dave Kohane..."  I had to go back and figure out who, exactly, Emily was.  I don't know if I am confusing the girls because they all work in the same industry or because so much information about others is presented in between their appearances.  Regardless, I feel like I am an idiot when I read this book.  I read lots and lots of stuff both for pleasure and in my job and I have never had this much trouble keeping track of previously presented information. 

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Re76
Posts: 26
Registered: ‎11-18-2008
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Re: Chapters Six through Nine


no4daughter wrote:

I enjoyed chapters 6 - 9 much more than the first five.  That being said, I am still struggling with keeping the characters straight.  For example, when I read the first sentence of chapter nine that says, "Curtis Lang met Emily Kaplan at a party given by Dave Kohane..."  I had to go back and figure out who, exactly, Emily was.  I don't know if I am confusing the girls because they all work in the same industry or because so much information about others is presented in between their appearances.  Regardless, I feel like I am an idiot when I read this book.  I read lots and lots of stuff both for pleasure and in my job and I have never had this much trouble keeping track of previously presented information. 


 

I also had the same issue. I am not sure why I am having such a difficult time either keeping the characters in this book straight. It is like there are several short stories combined into the book, without the connecting threads to bring the story together.

Renee

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