Monday, July 15, 2013

This is How You Lose Her (3.5)

“And that's when I know it's over. As soon as you start thinking about the beginning, it's the end.” - This is How You Lose Her

Well, this is one of those books that makes me feel like I’m either an idiot or a terrible person. I liked it but I didn’t love it. And the more I think about it, the less I like it.

This is How You Lose Her is the story of Yunior, his family, and his pathetic attempt at a love story. I didn’t find Yunior relatable for most of the novel. And while most of the novel is from his perspective, there are some random chapters in the middle from other characters’ perspective, and I’m not sure how they fit into the story. Those chapters were lovely, and when we went back to Yunior’s story for the end of the novel it was a bit of a disappointment.
“She's sensitive, too. Takes to hurt the way water takes to paper.” -- This is How You Lose Her

like this, but better.

Now I didn’t actually hate the novel as much as it's about to sound like I did. Diaz’s prose is beautiful. The short story in the middle of a Latina washwoman trying to make her way in America was lovely.

Her lover, Ramόn, has a wife who won’t move to America. He talks of buying a house where they can live together but is still writing home to the wife. That relationship is foreign to me, why keep a wife while you’re really with another woman? But at the same time I can understand it, a cross-continent divorce is probably difficult, and culturally may not be something Ramόn views as an option. At least they are honest with each other.

Yunior's story is less palatable. Yunior is devastated when the love of his life leaves him. She leaves him because she finds out he has cheated on her with over fifty different women. Call me a feminist (please), but I have no pity for him. And I barely feel like he learned his lesson. He couldn’t get over her and took to running, which gave him plantar fasciitis so he had to quit, which lead to yoga, which lead to a bad back and blah blah blah his life is so hard. 

His friends think his actions are entirely reasonable. His married friend knocks up a girl back in the Dominican Republic. And I think it was supposed to be sweet how excited he was to have a son, but I was a little more concerned about his wife and daughter back home

Call me a feminist, but I just couldn't like these men. 

As a complete aside: I just checked the holds I need to go pick up. I have five books to go get. whoops. I PANICKED when I finished my last book because I "only" had three books from the library. ONE of which was the second in a series and came before the first in the series (whoops) the SECOND is a Philippa Gregory and I didn't suspend my hold fast enough because I like Philippa Gregory. She's like my go-to author every time I have time to read because she generally has an amount of researched historical facts, which makes me feel smart, and it's about women and usually about who their in love with which is satisfying. But Philippa is no Jo, I do not have to read every book she's ever written. She's just kind of where I go when I don't know what to read. 

But I'm only 1/3 of the way through the Third I feel like I have a long way to go. Picking up 5 books seems like a lot. Especially since I have 2 2/3. 

I have a problem. 

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