Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Trouble - Kate Christensen

This is one of those books that sounded good on the flap cover, and raised a lot of issues that I normally enjoy reading about. The delivery, however, left a lot to be desired. The book focuses on Josie, a psychotherapist in a seemingly loveless marriage, who decided to leave her husband and precocious tween daughter to focus on her mid-life crisis. Her two best friends present her with conflicting views on the situation. Indrani, a single millionaire, offers a judgmental stance, questioning whether Josie has tried hard enough in her marriage. Unable to deal with the question, Josie flees to Mexico City to be with their third friend, Raquel, a famous rock star running away from her own fidelity problems. Once in Mexico, Josie experiences freedom she apparently was never able to enjoy in her structured life back home. While intended (I think) to be Josie's coming-of-age-late-in-life story, it seemed more like a reckless and irresponsible Spring Break, only more pathetic given that the main character should probably know better. Not so say that Josie isn't entitled to some fun, but mostly she came across and selfish and strikingly lacking in self-reflection, despite her profession. I mostly found this book annoying - and Josie's entire life quite uncomfortable - from her passionless husband to her brilliant yet vapid daughter to her shallow supposed life-long friends. The shocking twist at the end failed to bring about the deep reflection I expected, and ultimately, I was left wanting run away myself - far far away from this book.

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