This is my first chick lit and I really enjoyed reading it.Our own little church group in the area of Ellensburg, WA had taken up this custom of courting-vs-dating. All my children are married so I didn't get involved with it, plus I live in Ohio. But I wasn't sure what I thought of the idea. I was intrigued by the story premise of Trish's book. She made a believer out of me. I wish all Christian churches would promote this concept. And the book was not a dry read. It was funny and sweet and I couldn't put it down until I had turned the last page.I highly recommend this book.
Kara is a personal trainer who's been hurt by men in the past, and has vowed to take a hiatus from dating. Gabe is the owner of the new deli in town. He's gorgeous, a Christian and really interested in Kara. When a road trip puts them together with several wacky chaperones, will it be enough to change Kara's mind about dating? This is a charming and completely satisfying novel. Sometimes, when I read a book, I shake my head and say to myself, "the character never would have said (or done) that". In this freshman novel by Trish Perry, I rarely thought that. These characters were very in tune with my way of thinking. But that doesn't make the novel predictable or boring. Instead, it makes that characters and situations more credible.
I like books that instantly draw you in. This one didn't, but I still stuck with it, and I'm glad that I did. It was a very light, mildly fun book, and even though it's not one that's going to stay in my memory for very long, I did enjoy it. There was one thing, though, that nearly drew me crazy, and that was Perry's portrayal of "the teens". These are 18-year-old college graduates, yet Perry makes them act much younger than that - especially Rachelle. Her character was like that of an 11-year-old. I know it's popular for authors who don't really relate to teenagers to stereotype them as lazy, shallow, and rebellious, but Perry's philosophy seems to be that anyone under the age of 21 is completely incapable of understanding concepts that are the least bit complex. I nearly puked when I read the scene where Kara is explaining the unequally yoked metaphor from 1 Corinthians to Rachelle. It was as if she was explaining it to an 8-year-old! It just makes me cringe when people stereotype young people that way. (And yes, I happen to be 17, as you may have guessed :)) All in all, though, it was a good book and I'm glad I stuck with it.
I have mentioned before how much I love chick lit right? There's just something about reading women my age, going through the same situations I'm in, that makes for a great read. This book fits all those expectations and more. I admired Kara for her no dating policy. It's a different approach for a chick lit book as opposed to all the other stories where the girl tries to get the guy. It was an interesting switch to have the guy want to try to get the girl this time. I felt Kara and Gabe's chemistry was excellent throughout the novel. He seems like a great guy and someone who'd I'd like to date (if I wasn't already attached that is). I also enjoyed Kara's attitude towards Tiffany. I know Christians are supposed to be non-judgmental and be loving, but it is normally not realistic to act happy when someone annoys you. So I was glad to read that while Kara didn't act catty toward Tiffany, she did get annoyed and frustrated at her. It's ok to NOT like someone and still be a Christian. I will admit, in the beginning of the book, I didn't like Addie at all. Not that I have a problem with elderly folk, but I don't like it when they assume things and push people around to have things done their own way. And then they will use their age as their excuse, and since the rule is to always obey your elders, they will always get their way. So I was frustrated at first with Addie and her meddling. But as the story went on, I grew to like her very much, especially when we meet up with her sister and their adventures together. I'm also hoping that there will be a book on Jeremy. I love British guys, there's just something about that accent! It makes me just picture him as a Jude Law lookalike. This was a really fun book to read. The characters are all very colorful, the writing fresh and witty, and the story fast paced and a joy to read. Trish Perry has definitely made her mark in the Christian chick lit world and it's a definite winner!