“You can’t leave yet. I’m not finished falling in love with you.”
Hello everyone! So this is the second Colleen Hoover book I have read (Ugly Love being the first) and I have Confess sitting in my TBR pile right now. Expect a review of that to come later this week. I have to say her books have a way of sucker punching me right in the gut, but for some reason I am okay with it. Each time I read her work it is an emotional battleground. I would love to take a look inside of Colleen Hoover’s mind, just for a minute. She’s gotta be brilliant to come up with these concepts.
This is one of those books that I have a great need to discuss, so please feel free to comment your thoughts. I would absolutely love to hear them as I am stuck in the middle of nowhere without my normal reading group.
My Rating: A+
Goodreads Synopsis: Beloved #1 New York Times bestselling author Colleen Hoover returns with an unforgettable love story between a writer and his unexpected muse.
Fallon meets Ben, an aspiring novelist, the day before her scheduled cross-country move. Their untimely attraction leads them to spend Fallon’s last day in L.A. together, and her eventful life becomes the creative inspiration Ben has always sought for his novel. Over time and amidst the various relationships and tribulations of their own separate lives, they continue to meet on the same date every year. Until one day Fallon becomes unsure if Ben has been telling her the truth or fabricating a perfect reality for the sake of the ultimate plot twist.
My Thoughts: The premise of this book begins with two people with loads of chemistry, who decide to meet every year on November 9. When I was reading this book, I actually took a look at why I criticize romance so harshly. I am planning on making a separate post about this later, but the short version of this is, romance books are meant to hook you on the drama. If there wasn’t these elements, I wouldn’t have been interest in this book at all. So while there were some things that I was like “huh that seems a little bit superficial”, I understand that it had a purpose in this type of novel, meant to entertain.
And in that context, this book does its job so well. There was never a point where I felt lulled or bored. Everything had me on the edge of my seat, every November 9, I was rooting for Ben and Fallon. I love Colleen’s writing style. I am hooked every time on her build-up and I fall every time she hits you with the twist (And there is always a twist).
What I Liked: Ben. Oh my god. He was quite honestly one of the most well-written male love interest I have read this year. Both of the main characters were well-rounded and flawed in ways that made them painfully human. Only human stupidity could have come up with the November 9 plan, so it’s flawed compromise adds to the theme of vulnerability that fills this novel.
The dynamic between Fallon and Ben is impeccable. They banter, they fight, they love, they flirt exactly how two people with their characteristics should. The character development between the two of them from beginning to end was so well structured. Neither of them behaved at the end as they would have at the beginning, but also it spans almost six years. Their aging and maturing was great to watch.
What I Disliked: So if this were my usual rant, my main complaint would be that Fallon seems to need Ben to save her. However, he is the one who initiates her change, pushing her to be her better self, but she is the one who carries it forward. She takes it out of his hands and runs with it. So I don’t really see it as Ben “saving” Fallon. He just really gives her the push she needs to become herself again.
Spoiler Alert!! (My other problem was, is it realistic that Fallon forgives Ben for starting the fire? I have run myself ragged trying to figure this one out and if anyone has commentary on that I would love to hear it.) Though I do think the fact this is subject to debate actually enhances the novel.
Well, look at that….all of my complaints have actually become this I liked.
Would I recommend it? Yes, especially if you want a really beautiful romance with lots and lots of drama. Read it. Please.
Is this book on your to-read list? How do you feel about Colleen Hoover’s books? Would you participate in a November 9 ritual like Ben and Fallon?
P.S. I loved this Book Review of November 9, I recommend watching it after you read the book.