Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Book Review: My Girlfriend's Boyfriend

I’ve been doing some heavy reading lately, so when the opportunity came along to review Elodia Strain’s new book, My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend, I jumped at the chance.

This book made me smile from the get-go. We meet Jesse who is looking for the right guy and has a well-meaning boss at the coffee shop where she waitresses trying to help her do it. Jesse’s quirky personality, yet real emotional issues, instantly made me like her. She lives with her brother, loves musicals to the nth degree, and blurts out too much information whenever she gets in trouble. Which gets her into more trouble. Some of the scenes, including her “Yogainting” class made me laugh out loud. And as a generally conservative reader, belly laughing while reading was a new experience. Elodia Strain is a quick and witty writer and I loved her style.

The premise of the story is that Jesse meets two guys at the coffee shop. One is a regular guy, an aspiring writer, and she impulsively gives him her phone number. The other guy is a totally fabulous ad exec who has everything going for him--money, looks and a caring personality. As she dates both of them and really sees the good in each, I found myself totally drawn into the romantic triangle, wondering who she would pick because she really seemed to like both men, albeit for different reasons.

Just to illustrate, one of the funniest scenes in the book is when Jesse's cousin blackmails her for expensive toiletries and “mud” from a luxuriouus spa that the ad exec, Troy, is taking her to on a date. It is also a sweet scene because Troy remembers her quirk of celebrating obscure holidays and plays a board game with her in a romantic tucked away spot at the spa. But then, on the other hand, you have the regular guy, Ethan, who gives her a plant, and takes her to meet his sister and her two kids, and he shows her how normal his life is, while showing us what a sweetheart he is to her. So, she’s sort of stuck between incredible and wonderful, you know? Both are great and I couldn’t wait to find out who she chose and how it would end.

I read this book in one day, and when I got to the end, I was shocked. There was a twist I wasn’t expecting at all, and while it was definitely an original ending, I felt a little cheated. There was closure, but the ending left me a bit confused. Without giving anything away, I just felt like I needed to go back and read it again so I could truly understand the ending.

Anyway, if you are looking for a fun romance with a great heroine, this is the book for you. (It’s also based on the movie, starring Alyssa Milano.) I think Elodia Strain has a fresh, original storytelling style,especially with her hilarious internal dialogue and I enjoyed her sense of humor immensely.

Here is the back copy for it:

Jesse is looking for the "right guy." When she bumps into Ethan, a despairing writer who she inspires, she thinks she's found him. But only moments later she meets Troy, a successful advertising executive who makes almost every moment romantic. Both seem perfect, but things are not always what they seem. My Girlfriend's Boyfriend is a fun romance that blends warm sincerity with fresh storytelling


Crystal said...

Interesting! The premise reminds me of the movie "Because I Said So" starring Mandy Moore and Diane Keaton. Sounds like a good one!

Sarah Tokeley said...

I like the sound of this one, I get the feeling that the plot has something a bit more original than the usual love triangle?

Julie Coulter Bellon said...

Crystal, that was a great movie!

Sarah, it definitely had a more original ending than any love triangle I've ever read. But, it was a bit of a confusing ending, too. It's so hard to explain without giving it away. I'm thinking I should probably watch the movie of it now and see what I feel about that one.

Getting Your Read On said...

I've seen the movie, but I haven't read the book yet. I'm looking forward to getting my hands on it though. :)

Jordan McCollum said...

My husband's company was a sponsor of the movie . . . but we haven't seen it.

Kate said...

I'm so glad Elodia wrote another book. I just love her voice!

Jon Spell said...

My wife and I saw the movie last Christmas. It's very sweet, and I totally did not see the ending coming! I would probably watch Christopher Gorham in anything, though. (Ugly Betty, Covert Affairs)

Anonymous said...

This actually sounds like a fun read - light hearted and enjoyable... will have to check it out:) Thanks for sharing.. love discovering new books.

Anna said...

I watched the movie, but didn't realize it was a book too. Definitely a twist at the end, made me a bit confused, but when I understood what was going on I enjoyed it.

Knowing the end, I would be interested reading the book already knowing what's going to happen.