Annie lives in a dull town on England’s bleak east coast and is in a relationship with Duncan that mirrors the place; Tucker, once a brilliant songwriter and performer, has gone into seclusion in rural America—or at least that’s what his fans think. Duncan is obsessed with Tucker’s work to the point of derangement, and when Annie dares to go public on her dislike of his latest album, there are quite unexpected, life-changing consequences for all three. Goodreads
This book has 400 pages.
It is a Contemporary Fiction novel.
This was an audiobook.
The language I listened to it in was German.
It received 2 out of 5 stars from me.
Beware of spoilers and me ranting about this book! I am going to skip the + part for this one. The things I liked can be compromised in a short list: Annie and Duncan were an interesting, unhappy and lonely couple and a contrast to other bookish couples. | The process of Annie getting to know an idol she has liked for a long time using e-mails. | Travelling with rather untypical locations to visit due to Duncan’s obsession.
– | The Ending
Simply put, this book would have had the potential to end differently. To be either inspiring or a lesson learned for everyone, but it was neither. It could have focused on deep family ties and broken ones getting fixed or an adventure that is in the past now. It wasn’t that either. It was horrible and immature.
Now, the following two paragraphs will contain severe spoilers and to prevent you from reading something you don’t wanna know it will have a white font color. You have to highlight it and therefore somewhat agree to be totally sure you want to know what I wrote there.
There is a problem and morally questionable scene that apparently no one really seems to bother with or even remotely care about. And most of all it’s definitely not the author who cares about it and therefore doesn’t write it down as anything being done wrong. This is the scene in which Tucker and Annie finally feel ready to have sex. Tucker doesn’t have a condom on him and so Annie excuses herself to go to the bathroom. Once she gets back, without having done anything, they continued where they had left off.
First of all, what the hell did he think she was doing in there? Secondly, why did this crazy woman think it was okay to non-consensually try and get impregnated by someone she only met recently and already has five children he never really wanted? Thirdly and lastly, why does everyone in the novel seem to just shrug their shoulders at this? It is left unclear weather or not it worked out for her in the end, the act itself is bad enough. Additionally, once her (very badly portrayed idiot) therapist starts to questions any of this, she gives him a kiss on his forehead and leaves him. I don’t even know what to say anymore.
Many strings of the plot were left open and it also ended in a way where there are still questions left to answer. The whole ending felt rushed. For five full hours, I have enjoyed this novel to a point where I even considered rating it 4 out of 5 stars, but starting with the last hour, everything went bad. As I said, it was rushed and confused to a point where there wasn’t any real focus.
The last chapter and last audio file from the CD was majorly distracting at first. I know it would have been easier to read them myself instead of listening to them, but that didn’t change my problems with it. So I listened to it two more times. It seemed so random, although Tucker had said he wanted to use the time he had spent there to create something out of them. It, again, was confusing and created more questions than it answered.
However, this book receives the award for the worst ending I have ever read. And I am sorry to say that, because I did enjoy it throughout most of it. I don’t think that I will be reading something by Nick Hornby any time soon or ever again.
► everyone who really likes Nick Hornby.