Thursday, October 28, 2010

Book Review: Emily's Chance by Sharon Gillenwater

Sometimes, a person may want to read a book and not have to think deeply, just let the story take them into "another place" for a while and allow them to be entertained without requiring them to concentrate on a "message" or look for an allegory behind every bush, so to speak.

Well, I do understand such feelings. I like to enjoy what I read and to be regaled with a good tale, even amused when appropriate. However, I am a thinker. I actually find much pleasure in having to think deeply, in being challenged to find hidden meanings in things, and in discovering profound truths in what I read.

Emily's Chance: A Novel (The Callahans of Texas)That's probably the main reason that Emily's Chance did not hold my interest for very long. If you have been reading this blog for more than just a few weeks, you know I refer to some books as being too "fluffy". That usually means shallow plots, flat (or unbelievable) characters, and/or stories loaded with cliches.

And, for me, Emily's Chance is fluffy. I simply couldn't believe the characterization, and the plot struck me as being too contrived. I think if I had read Chance saying "darlin'" just one more time, I would have thrown the book across the room.

Maybe if I wasn't from West Texas (the setting of Emily's Chance) I might have thought that these characters could be real. But I grew up in a city approx. 40-50 miles from the place where this book takes place. And believe me, although I have known many people who do some of these things (like live on a ranch, dance the Texas Two-Step, own an oil company, drive a pickup truck and drink iced tea with every meal), it was all too stereotypical. Not much like the West Texas I know and love.

Chance, the primary male character, is cute and loveable. But he's too perfect. There was only one time that I saw where he admitted fault within himself. The rest of the book portrayed him as the ideal man. Ugh! It was too much for me.

I know some of you may like books like this. If so, click on this link to read the synopsis from And perhaps you will want to get a copy for yourselves. Great! That's the beauty of diversity. But if you don't like fluffy, skip this one.

I hope I am not being too harsh in this review. Nevertheless, I want to be honest.

I am not saying that this book is without merit. But I am saying that I personally prefer more "meat" to my reading choices. So, I have to give Emily's Chance a 3 1/2 out of 5 stars.

Emily's Chance is available October 2010 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.

How about you? Have you read Emily's Chance? If so, did you like it? Do you like fluffy books? Please comment below. I'd like to hear your opinion!

(I received this book from Revell Books for review purposes. I received no monetary compensation for this review. All opinions expressed are completely my own.)

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