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I hemmed and hawed over my choice for this week’s Casting Call Friday.  I had zero inspiration for what to cast this week until, perusing my bookshelves, I stumbled upon an old favorite by Megan Crane.

Here’s a quick summary (via Goodreads)

Meredith McKay has gone to a lot of trouble to create the picture-perfect life for herself far away from her troublesome family, thank you. When her fathers car accident forces her back to her hometown, however, she soon discovers that there’s no running away from family issues —there’s only delaying the inevitable. Can anyone sort out a lifetime of drama in one hot summer? Throw in a hot guy from back in high school with an ax to grind, a best friend turned enemy turned soon-to-be-sister-in-law, and of course, the sometimes irritating, sometimes delightful members of her own family, and Meredith is on her way to figuring out that a trip through the past is the best way to move forward. With one revelation after another coming to light, Meredith must reexamine all the things shes ever believed, including the truth about herself. Could it be that she isnt the picture-perfect good girl she always thought she was?

Meredith McKay – Meredith is your classic “good girl” that always tries to make everyone else happy. Growing up with her brother and Jeannie, she’s always been the nice girl, apologizing for their antics.  After moving away she finds a job she doesn’t really like and falls into a relationship with a guy who’s seemingly perfect for her, but she doesn’t really love.  It’s not until she’s forced to move back home to care for her injured father does she realize that she needs to start living the life she wants.

Rachel McAdams has the perfect “the girl next door” attitude and ability to play an adorable frazzled, put upon Meredith.

Scotty Sheridan – The former butt of the McKay family’s jokes, once gawky and the class “loser, Scott has grown into a confident, clever county prosecutor.  He’s had a long-time crush on Meredith, but has a lot of resentment for the way she, Jeannie, and Christian treated him.

Matthew Goode would be fantastic as the tall, dark, handsome Scott Sheridan, quietly pining over Meredith, but using his snarky sense of humor to push her buttons.

Jeannie Gillespie – Meredith’s former best friend and soon-to-be sister in law, Jeannie likes to be in control and the center of attention.  She’s funny, confident, and fiercely loyal to the McKay family.

Katherine Heigl is the perfect Jeannie.  Controlling, slightly passive-aggressive and sometimes she can be catty, but Jeannie would do anything for her friends and family.

Christian McKay – Meredith’s handsome lawyer older brother is a type-A personality and, like Jeannie, is used to Meredith going along with most of his plans (including taking a sabbatical from her job to take care of their father).  Christian doesn’t take surprises well and is used to getting his way.

Adam Scott has the right kind of sarcastic attitude plus the ability to play both characters that can be jerks (see Stepbrothers/Leap Year) and characters that are sweet and sympathetic (see The Vicious Kind/Parks and Recreation)

Hope McKay – The youngest of the McKay clan, Hope is the antithesis of Meredith.  Hope does what she wants, others be damned.  She’s got a dry, quick wit and tries to break Meredith out of her passive, “good girl” shell.

Mae Whitman has the disaffected youth personality down pat and would be awesome as the irreverent, hilarious Hope.

Father McKay – I couldn’t find a name for the patriarch of the McKays, since he’s mostly referred to as Dad, but he’s quiet and unassuming, and it’s easy to see where Meredith gets her eagerness to please.  He’s got a basement aquarium that he spends most of his time and energy on, much to the dismay of his children.

Richard Jenkins just is this character in my head.  He’s perfect for this sweet, but kind of sad character.

What do you think?  Agree/disagree?  I want to hear your thoughts on who would be perfect for this fun, charming book.

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Courtesy of Goodreads: Much-heralded and long awaited, Terry McMillan’s tour-de-force novel introduces the Price family-matriarch Viola, her sometimes-husband Cecil, and their four adult kids, each of whom sees life-and one another-through thick and thin, and entirely on their own terms. With her hallmark exuberance and cast of characters so sassy, resilient, and full of life that they breathe, dream, and shout right off the page, the author of the phenomenal best-sellers Waiting to Exhale and How Stella Got Her Groove Back has given us a novel that takes us ever-further into the hearts, minds, and souls of America-and gives us six more friends we never want to leave.

First let me start off by saying that when I opened up this book to find an extended family tree on the first two pages, I immediately became a little nervous.  No one wants to interrupt their reading experience by constantly referring to the legend at the front of the book.

Luckily for me, I didn’t have to.

In A Day Late and A Dollar Short, Terry McMillan paints the picture of a dysfunctional family just trying to make it day by day. There’s Viola, the matriarch, who starts the book off by suffering a nearly fatal asthma attack. There’s Cecil, her (soon to be ex) husband, who has left Viola and is living with another (younger) woman across town. Then there are their children: Paris, Janelle, Lewis and Charlotte, each with their own set of problems.

This story is told from six perspectives, which initially makes it difficult to enjoy. The chapters are not labeled by name so it takes you a minute to realize who is speaking.  Unfortunately, this is consistent throughout the entire book. While each character’s story is engaging, the fact that each one doesn’t have their own distinctive voice makes it a bit bothersome. Added to this is the fact that the chapters are long-winded, trying to cram every detail making certain parts of this story repetitive.

Even with those problems, I still really enjoyed this book. McMillan has created wonderfully complex characters that are constantly challenged, exploring exactly why they have become the way they are.  Not only focusing on problems that affect the black community, the seemingly casual way with which she deals with different traumatic events, such as Lewis’s molestation by family members and Paris’s substance abuse, leaves one caught off guard.  It’s not that she doesn’t delve into the matter…she does. However, she doesn’t allow the character to use it as an excuse. She hasn’t created a book of victims bemoaning and belaboring. She takes this family that has essentially fallen apart and shown how they each are trying to piece it back together again, gifting us with a group of sassy, strong people struggling to find solutions, which makes this an uplifting, positive story.  

 LitSnit Verdict: B

The Sherlockian by Graham Moore

Release Date: December 2010

In December 1893, Sherlock Holmes-adoring Londoners eagerly opened their Strand magazines– anticipating the detective’s next adventure– only to find the unthinkable: his creator, Arthur Conan Doyle, had killed their hero off. London spiraled into mourning — crowds sported black armbands in grief — and railed against Conan Doyle as his assassin.

Then in 1901, just as abruptly as Conan Doyle had “murdered” Holmes in “The Final Problem,” he resurrected him. Though the writer kept detailed diaries of his days and work, Conan Doyle never explained this sudden change of heart. After his death, one of his journals from the interim period was discovered to be missing, and in the decades since, has never been found.

Or has it?

When literary researcher Harold White is inducted into the preeminent Sherlock Holmes enthusiast society, The Baker Street Irregulars, he never imagines he’s about to be thrust onto the hunt for the holy grail of Holmes-ophiles: the missing diary. But when the world’s leading Doylean scholar is found murdered in his hotel room, it is Harold – using wisdom and methods gleaned from countless detective stories – who takes up the search, both for the diary and for the killer.

This type of work is clearly not everyone’s cup of tea, especially someone with a Conon Doyle aversion…wait, do such people actually exist? I don’t know, all I know is that I’m not one of them. I’m rather big on mystery, especially in the winter months when the thought of solving a crime while curled up under a warm blanket, sipping chamomile tea becomes especially appealing. This book will come out in December so its timing is perfect!

The only thing I’m a bit apprehensive about is that this is the author’s first book. I try and stick to a policy of never reading debut novels unless I’ve heard great things about them…usually form Janelle or Erin. But, I’ll take a leap of faith with this one on account that it’s being published by Twelve (an independent publishing company that limits its output to merely 12 books a year, one for each month). I’ve never been led astray by Twelve before; their selections criteria is pretty stringent. I’m hoping for more of the same with The Sherlockian.

*Waiting on Wednesday is an ingenious idea hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine.

Summary: (via Goodreads) Caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it, Charlie is navigating through the strange worlds of love, drugs, “The Rocky Horror Picture Show”, and dealing with the loss of a good friend and his favorite aunt.

Review: The Perks of Being a Wallflower is the unique creation of author Stephen Chbosky. This book, which takes the format of an epistolary novel, describes the life of a fourteen year old boy in his first year of high school. Every few days the main character, Charlie, writes a new letter in which he updates an unnamed recipient about the events of his life. Sometimes a lot happens, other times the letter are more personal and reflective. Regardless, we continue to follow his steps into that intimately familiar territory of adolescence.

After completing the book, two distinct feeling emerge: a feeling of compassion toward the great amount of drama and trauma in Charlie’s life, and an unsettling feeling toward the strangeness of Charlie’s behavior. This eeriness is cause by the fact that he only exhibits two distinct emotional states: incredible emotional hyperactivity and complete emotional inactivity. The mystery behind his anonymity (Charlie is the pen-name he creates for himself while addressing the letters) combined with the fact that we never learn where he is from or who he is writing to also contribute to this sensation. And it’s not until we realize the strategic purpose behind his behavior and anonymity that we truly start to understand the book. It seems Chbosky envisioned his hero as the fictional representation of all of us. The author manages to give Charlie this universality by making him a perfect chameleon: Charlie is both reclusive and outgoing, both your best friend and a complete oddity, both emotionally stable and a complete wreck. The reason Charlie needs to be all these things is because he is facing the quintessential life dilemma of choosing whether he should try and satisfy others or try and satisfy himself. What complicates the matter is that he repeatedly fails to do either, which lead him into modes of depression, disorientation, and indifference.

The only times he does get some respite from himself is when he reads books and spends time with Sam, the girl that he loves. Charlie finds comfort in the books that he reads (e.g., The Stranger, The Catcher in the Rye, The Fountainhead), and you can see a 1991 version of Holden Caulfield and Meursault in him. His friendship with Sam is another thing altogether. He is in awe of her bluntness and honesty and beauty. She gives him a strange sort of comfort and he craves her on a purely emotional basis, something quite contradictory to what he is: a hormonally driven teenage boy.

Perhaps because it’s been so many years since we’ve been fourteen or maybe it’s because we never really had the time to analyze life at that age, but reading Charlie’s narrative is a revelation. The honesty in his words is stirring, packed with innocent notions about things like acceptance, self image, and the emotions of parents and sibling. His account is both wondrous and difficult to read. In many ways, what he reveals isn’t new at all but more like an old memory we’ve forgotten.

Lit Snit Verdict: B

Summary (via Goodreads): Everything seems just perfect in Grace’s life. She’s got a great job, a lovely house, a handsome boyfriend – and she’s pretty happy with it all.

Except that Grace has got a secret. She has a family. One she ran away from when life got too tough. Not to mention John, the only man she ever truly loved, who she left behind as well.

So when her sister finally tracks her down – to announce that their estranged father is in hospital – Grace has to make a decision. She can stay in the safe little world she’s carved out for herself, or she can go home. To face the music. But going home really isn’t as easy as it seems. Especially when the music seems to be playing a funeral march, her siblings are beyond furious with her, and their father’s second wife is behaving very strangely indeed….

A Field Guide to Burying Your Parents is a heartbreakingly funny story about life, loss and what it really means to come home.

Review: I have to get one thing off my chest before I really get into this review.  Something bugged me about this book from one of the first few scenes and has stuck with me every time I think about this book that I just have to address with Liza Palmer.

Liza, love you, but the game Sorry, isn’t played with dice!  It’s played with cards.  Sorry, the long-time-Sorry-playin’-OCD-freak in me just needed to get that off my chest.

Phew.  Now that’s done, I can talk about how much I enjoyed this book.  It starts off a little slow and, to be honest, I wasn’t sure if I was going to love Grace in the beginning, but all my reservations flew out the window as we meet the rest of the Hawkes clan.  I realized as the novel progressed how much the Grace I met in the first scene was a shadow of herself without her family around.  Palmer has a way with characters; each of the siblings felt very real and well-rounded.  Grace’s younger brother Leo is downright adorable.  He’s a giant skinny, lovable, genius puppy that I just wanted to hug throughout the entire book. (In my head, he’s basically Lee Pace)

The sibling relationship are complicated, messy, but full of love.  Palmer weaves flashbacks in with the present seemlessly giving me the feeling that I’ve grown up in this family, too.  Palmer dispenses with Grace’s boyfriend fairly quickly and without much explanation, but it doesn’t matter because the second John and Grace are on the page together they have such chemistry I  kind of forget about the boyfriend altogether.

Palmer creates a good balance between the emotion and the plot, creating one of the more odious step-families since Cinderella.  I was constantly torn between tears and spewing outrage on the Hawkes children’s behalf.

This is a quick, enjoyable read like I’d expect from Palmer, whose first novel Conversations with the Fat Girl is one of my chick lit favorites.  A Field Guide to Burying Your Parents is emotional but hopeful tale of family, love, and knowing it’s never too late to go home again.

Lit Snit Verdit: B+

As Comic Con winds down, I’m here to give you my last comic series recommendation/review.  If you’re not that familiar with comics, I hope you’ve seen a series or two that’s caught your eye.  Not all comics are about superheroes and people with powers.  Many of today’s comic series are dramatic, thought-provoking reads that rival (or are many times better than) what’s on the bestseller list.  I hope you’ll give one of these graphic novels a try next time you’re looking for something good to read.

DMZ written by Brian Wood

DMZ is set in New York City, where photography intern Matty Roth, is thrust in the middle of America’s second civil war that has turned the island of Manhattan into a demilitarized zone.  Matty, now the only reporter in the DMZ, tries to make sense of the war and report the truth, as both sides of the war, the federal government and the “Free State” armies, conspire, lie, and attempt to use Matty as their pawn.

Living in New York, I was a huge fan of the concept of DMZ.  Wood and his co-creator and artist Riccardo Burchielli have imagined a horrific, fascinating vision of NYC.  A friend at work and I often hypothesize apocalypse exit strategies and “what if” catastrophe scenarios (because we’re strange and morbid that way) and DMZ is like seeing one of those conversations come to life.  Wood tackles moral issues, politics, religion, wartime ethics—nothing is clear cut, but every issue makes you think.  Like Scalped, DMZ can get very dark, but that’s what makes it so unique and fascinating.  Wood has created a world that makes you think about things on a global and personal level.  In later volumes Wood seems to get bogged down by political and social commentary at the detriment to characters, making it a slight struggle to get through for me, but I still enjoyed every volume.  Matty’s transformation from the boy who was left in the DMZ to the world-weary report that struggles to find something or someone to believe in is difficult to witness because seeing the chaos in this world gone mad, even I felt helpless and struggled to make sense of it all.  DMZ isn’t a complete downer though.  Matty is a realistic protagonist and the characters that fill the DMZ are intriguing and full of surprises.

I can’t end my Comic Con recs without mentioning two other series that I adore: Buffy the Vampire, Season 8, which is a MUST for any Buffy fan, and Umbrella Academy, a bizarrely brilliant series that the A.V. Club calls “…part X-Men and part The Royal Tenenbaums…”  I wish I could write full reviews on all my favorite series, but I assure you both of these books are well-worth a read.

Oh, and I can’t believe I forgot to ask this until this last post, but are there any good comic series you guys would recommend?

I was feeling a bit under the weather yesterday so I didn’t get around to my comic review post, so today’s Comic Con-inspired post is a twofer.

Runaways created by Brian K. Vaughn

Runaways is another delightful creation from Brian K. Vaughn (Note: if you’re ever unsure where to start when you dive into the comic world, he’s a great writer to start with).  Runaways all started with one simple question: what would you do if you discovered your parents were super villains?  After six teens, Alex, Karolina, Gert, Chase, Molly and Nico, discover their parents are members of a criminal group they take to the streets, wanting nothing to do with their parents’ evil ways. (I know this is a vague summary, but to say anything more would be giving away ever juicy twist that makes Runaways awesome)

To say I adore Runaways might be an understatement.  These are books I re-read again and again, never failing to smile at Molly’s innocent charm or Chase’s silly buffoonery. The series also has what is probably one of my favorite character in book, TV, anything: Gertrude Stein.  Smart and sassy with her psychic dinosaur at her side (I know, I know, just go with it. It’s easier when you don’t struggle.), Gert has carved herself a little place in my heart.  I don’t want to give anything away that’s too spoiler-y because this series is full of surprises, but the first seven volumes, written by Vaughn are pure genius fun.  Joss Whedon picks up the eighth volume, which is decent, but, as much as I adore Whedon, doesn’t have the same flavor that Vaughn brought. Other writers come in after that until the series pitters to a halt.  They say they’re “retooling” the series, but it’s been a while now so I don’t know if it will be picked up again or not.  I’ve heard they’re making a movie, but I’ll believe it when I see it.

I urge you, if you’re a fan of the YA genre (or even if you’re not) give Vaughn’s run of this series a try.  It’s full of heart and comedy, while realistically portraying an emotional coming of age story.

Fables created by Bill Willingham
(via Goodreads) When a savage creature known only as the Adversary conquered the fabled lands of legends and fairy tales, all of the infamous inhabitants of folklore were forced into exile. Disguised among the normal citizens of modern-day New York, these magical characters have created their own peaceful and secret society within an exclusive luxury apartment building called Fabletown. But when Snow White’s party-girl sister, Rose Red, is apparently murdered, it is up to Fabletown’s sheriff, a reformed and pardoned Big Bad Wolf, to determine if the killer is Bluebeard, Rose’s ex-lover and notorious wife killer, or Jack, her current live-in boyfriend and former beanstalk-climber.

I love the entire concept of Fables. Ageless fairy tale characters wandering the streets of NYC?  Yes, please! Whether you’re well-versed in fairy tale lore or not, the characters are entirely engaging and compelling to read.  Fables is funny, compelling, and a little bit grim.  It’s one of those series I want to completely immerse myself in, wishing it were real.  Every volume offers something new and different, whether it be a murder mystery, crime caper, or an epic war, making the series an exciting read.

This series has launched a few different spin offs (including one novel) which I need to pick up.  If you were at all a fan of our book club book, The Book of Lost Things, I would encourage you to try Fables.  It keeps the spirit of dark old world tales and is entirely addictive.

Yay for Friday! What a better way to start off this weekend that a Casting Call Session? 🙂

This week’s choice is Sloppy Firsts by Megan McCafferty. I love, love, love this book. As a matter of fact, Daniela used to make fun of me for how much I love this book (and rightfully so…my gushing over the swoonworthy leading male was a tad bit ridiculous I’ll admit now).Because of the great love I have for this book, I’ve been struggling with my casting choices but I think I may FINALLY have them right. So here we go!

Jessica Darling: Ellen Page

Jessica is a 16-year-old girl who feels ‘like a fish out of     water’. She’s smart, sassy and awkward. I feel like Ellen Page would totally capture that awkward teenage angst with a dash of snark and is pretty but not TOO pretty.

Bethany Darling: Kate Hudson

Jessica’s older sister and a blonde bridezilla. Based on her previous experience on playing a superficial bridezilla, I’ll go with Kate Hudson. She would irritate the heck out of me if she were my sister.I admit she may be a bit too old, though…

Mrs.Darling: Jean Smart


Jess’s mom is also supposed to be a beautiful blond woman who is super feminine and it appears that Jessica considers her to be the older version of her sister. I’m going with Jean Smart because she’s a fox and I think she’d nail that ultra feminine and motherly character.

Bridget Milhokovich: Leven Rambin

Jessica’s childhood best friend, now a model. She’s described as fair and beautiful but paranoid when it comes to the way she looks. “That’s because born beauties get so much praise that their appearance becomes crucial to their self-worth.” Leven’s character on ABC’s Scoundrels is similar to this so I think she would be perfect.

Paul Parlipiano: Kellan Lutz

OK. She has “hot buttered sex” dreams about Paul Parlipiano. She is “overwhelmed by the urge to lick the sweat off his six-pack. Yum yum.” This guy needs to be HOT. He needs to be athletic as he is on the track team with her. Kellan Lutz is both. I’m sure he could play ‘Columbia University early acceptance smart’ as well.

Scotty Glazer: Corey Monteith

According to Jessica’s mother, Scotty is a catch. He plays baseball, basketball and football. He has a strong jaw and suffers from chronic bed head. He was also Jessica’s first boyfriend. I’m casting Monteith solely because this is the type of character he plays on Glee. He’s not deep. He’s attractive and gets by.

Sara D’Abruzzi: Lacey Chabert

Sara D’Abruzzi is a member of what Jessica and Hope call the “Clueless Crew”. She’s rich and uses “oh my god” and “quote, unquote” a lot. She is upset about looking like a “butchy softball player instead of a ballerina”. Lacey doesn’t fit this last requirement but she could completely capture that spoiled rich girl quality that Sara needs.

Manda Powers: Madeline Zima

Manda “thinks that reading feminist manifestos makes up for her borderline ho-bag behavior”. Another member of the Clueless Crew, she is called the “Kissing Slut” and “Lend-a-Hand-a-Manda” and will only lose her virginity to a hot, six-foot tall blond guy who drives a jeep. Madeline has shown us in her performance as Mia on Californication that she can play a young, smart Lolita in the making .

Hyacinth ‘Hy’ Wallace: Shannon Sossamon

Hy is gorgeous in an edgy way. She comes to Pineville as a supposed transfer but we later learn that she s a socialite who’s only using the group to write a book called Bubblegum Bimbos and Assembly Line Meatballers. Shannon Sossamon is perfect for this. She’s gorgeous, model like and could go from blue jeans to limousines in two minutes flat.

*sigh*

There are a bunch of characters in this book but I just focused on the ones that I thought were important. Which brings me to the most important one to me–

Marcus Flutie: Now, I’m in love with Marcus Flutie. In love. When I first started this series, I decided that any man I was going to get involved with should be just like Marcus Flutie (yes, Daniela…even if he asked to pee in a yogurt container! 🙂 ). My feelings for Flutie are passionate so I’m having a problem finding anyone who can measure up. The person I think comes the closest for me?

Adam Brody.


He’s skinny enough. He’s cute but not hot. I could totally imagine him writing me poetry and being enough of a delinquent that I would have to help him pass a urine test. He can play super smart but has the ability to play somewhat of a bad boy as well. He’s just dreamy enough…

He’s as close as it’s going to get for me and even then, it’s not on the money!

Who would you cast? Did I miss a favorite character? Do you think I should have cast Hope even if she’s not seen? Let me know! (I would especially love to hear who Marcus Flutie would be for YOU!)

In honor of Comic Con this week, I’m sharing some of my favorite comic series for the next five days.  Yesterday I talked about Scalped by Jason Aaron, a dark, gritty tale about life on a Native American reservation, and today I’m going to talk about the first of two series that I’ll share that are created by the brilliant Brian K. Vaughn.

Y: The Last Man written by Brian K. Vaughn

(via Goodreads) In the summer of 2002, a plague of unknown origin destroyed every last sperm, fetus, and fully developed mammal with a Y chromosome–with the apparent exception of one young man and his male pet. This “gendercide” instantaneously exterminated 48% of the global population, or approximately 2.9 billion men.

Now, aided by the mysterious Agent 355, the last human male Yorick Brown must contend with dangerous extremists, a hoped-for reunion with a girlfriend on the other side of the globe, and the search for exactly why he’s the only man to survive.

What could easily be a silly male fantasy realized, Y: The Last Man instead is a funny, grim, thought-provoking, and just a flat-out fascinating tale.  Over ten volumes, and five years (within the story) you see characters grow and change, adjusting to this new world.  Unconventional, but a perfect duo, Yorick (along with his pet monkey Ampersand) and Agent 355 quickly became a delight to read even against this dark backdrop.  They’re a great duo; Yorick’s sly sense of humor is perfect against Agent 355 stoicism.

I was slightly annoyed with the ambiguity as to the cause of the plague that wiped out mankind, but I grew to love the characters so much that I was able to set aside any issues I had with some convoluted plotting (it was also hard reading this with months in between, having to go back and remember what had happened in the previous volume. Lucky for you, all ten volumes are available for purchase and you won’t have to wait for the next installment).  Vaughn created something special with his ability to tackle issues on a global scale with the political and sociological ramifications of losing all the men in the world (save one), while making it very much a story about a boy in love.  Vaughn uses Y to explore issues of morality, humanity, and gender, but is never preachy. Y: The Last Man hits all the right notes of humor, drama, and action, making it a pleasure to read.

Dissatisfied both with writing a “Single Girl on the Edge/ Ledge/Verge” lifestyle column and with her boyfriend (who has a name for his car and compulsively collects plastic bread ties), Ruby Capote sends her best columns and a six-pack of beer to the editor of The New York News and lands herself a new job in a new city.

In New York, Ruby undertakes the venerable tradition of Poker Night—a way (as men have always known) to eat, drink, smoke, analyze, interrupt one another, share stories, and, most of all, raise the stakes. There’s Skorka, model by profession, home wrecker by vocation; Jenn, willing to cross county lines for true love; Danielle, recently divorced, seducer of at least one father/son combo in her quest to make up for perceived “missed opportunities.”

When Ruby falls for her boss, Michael, all bets are off. He’s a challenge. He’s her editor. And he wants her to stop being quippy and clever and become the writer—and the woman—he knows she can be. Adding to Ruby’s uncertainty is his amazing yet ambiguous kiss in the elevator, and the enjoyably torturous impasse of he-loves-me, he-loves-me-not.

What happens when you realize that Mr. Right has his own unresolved past? Where does that leave the future you envisioned? Ruby knows that happy endings aren’t for cowards, and she hasn’t lost hope that there are risks worth taking. As smart as it is laugh-out-loud funny, Girls’ Poker Night is a twenty-first-century His Girl Friday and a refreshingly upbeat look at friendship, work, and love.

Hmmm.

Based on the title and summary, I thought this would be a book about Ruby’s relationships, both romantic and platonic. I expected something along the lines of Sex and the City, where all of Ruby’s wild and wacky antics would be neatly summarized in Ruby’s version of SATC’s Sunday brunch, which in this case would be girls’ poker night.

Not so much.

We learn that Ruby goes through life playing it safe. By playing it safe, she’s found herself unhappy in her 2 year relationship with Doug but she sees no point in ending it as she doesn’t want to deal with the confrontation.  When Ruby gets the perfect out, new employment requiring her to move from Boston to NYC, she still doesn’t end it because she doesn’t want the confrontation. It’s easier to stay.

I get why the author has titled this book Girls’ Poker Night. I get that she uses this night to demonstrate how much Ruby likes to play it safe. Ruby doesn’t take risks in poker because, as in all aspects of her life, she doesn’t like to lose. I get it. Fine.

Apparently the author doesn’t either.

I feel like Davis spent this entire book playing it safe. The friendships, referenced to in the title, aren’t really explored. Hell, the poker night provides realizations for everyone BUT Ruby. The attraction between Ruby and her editor, Michael, is touched upon but not in-depth.  There is no ‘loves-me, loves-me-not’ because from what I can see, the editor clearly wants to be with her. It’s Ruby being insecure, whiny and afraid of becoming emotionally involved.  Even the small twist that takes place towards the end of the novel isn’t really explained either. None of this makes sense to me because the novel definitely has more than its share of necessary dialogue.

With all of that being said, it’s still an interesting and amusing read. Written in short, journal-like entries, this book has a few laugh out loud moments & some great quotes.  At the very least it’s quick and entertaining read. It’s not the best book I’ve read, nor is it the worst.  It’s just, well…blah,.

LitSnit Verdict: C

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