I don’t know if I should be proud that I made it all the way to July before bailing on a book or if I should be disappointed that I did in fact bail, something I hate doing. I hate giving up on books for many reasons but one of them is the simple fact that I buy all my books. I love libraries and I am a huge supporter of them, but I’ve always had to own my books. It’s weird and more importantly, it’s expensive. So when a hardcover gets shoved in a drawer unfinished, I can’t help but feel like I wasted not only time but money. The point is, it’s a reality of reading. Not every book is meant for every reader. That is why there are countless genres and sub-genres and an infinite amount of authors out there to tell a new story. I was trying to decide if I should review a book that I didn’t finish, but ultimately I think it would be good to point out why this story just didn’t work for me.
I was drawn to Rumaan Alam’s Rich and Pretty based on a few mentions in various Book Riot podcasts. The story centers around two childhood friends who are grown up, living in New York. The story was described as analyzing a friendship when two people have grown up differently and are in different stages of their lives. One friend is very Type A, she is getting married and has very wealthy parents. The other is in a small apartment, working a job she doesn’t like and is looking for a man to sleep with. I was intrigued because I am in that stage in my life where it seems that half of my friends are getting married and having children while the other half are bar hopping every weekend. And I am somewhere in the middle, not ready for marriage and kids but in a more Netflix and chill mode instead of bar hopping.
The plot of this novel seemed to be able to shed some light on this weird transition I find myself in with the people in my life. And it may have done that by page 200 or the end of the novel, but I didn’t make it past page 100. I found myself utterly bored by the characters. In my mind, Sarah (type A, getting married) was Blair Waldorf on an episode of Gossip Girl with much less attitude and personality. Lauren was selfish and bored at work but lacked the ambition to make her career better. And the writing style was not my cup of tea at all. Alam loved to write every step each character took down a street and every thought that entered their mind. Which is fine if there is a point to it, but for the life of me I couldn’t figure out what the point was. The plot moved very slowly and there was no telling how much time had passed. We would get a scene of them both at dinner then four pages later Sarah was wondering if she should call Lauren because she hadn’t seen her in awhile.
This story just never picked up for me and I couldn’t get invested in the characters to really care what happened. I am sure Sarah got married, after a fight with Lauren they both admitted their faults as friends and Lauren is a great maid of honor. I bet she brings the guy in her office as her wedding date who she has fallen in love with by that point. I mean I could be wrong here, but that felt like that was where it was headed, which is fine, I was just way too bored getting there.