Author: Rainbow Rowell
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Publisher: Orion Books (3rd July 2014)
Georgie McCool knows that her marriage is in trouble. It’s been in trouble for a long time. She still loves her husband, Neal, and he still loves her – but that almost seems besides the point now.
Two days before they’re supposed to visit Neal’s family in Omaha for Christmas, Georgie tells him that she can’t go. She’s a TV writer and something’s come up on her show; she has to stay in Los Angeles. She knows that Neal will be upset with her – he is always a little upset with her – but she doesn’t expect him to pack up the kids and go home without her.
When her husband and the kids leave for the airport, Georgie wonders if she’s finally done it. If she’s ruined everything.
That night, Georgie discovers a way to communicate with Neal in the past. It’s not time travel, not exactly, but she feels like she’s been given an opportunity to fix her marriage before it starts . . .
Is that what she’s supposed to do? Or would Georgie and Neal be better off if their marriage never happened?
Rating: ***** (5 stars)
LANDLINE is a standalone novel from Rainbow Rowell. Before reading this book I had already read FANGIRL (review)which is aimed at a young adult audience, whereas LANDLINE is my first foray into her adult fiction work. LANDLINE tells the story of Georgie McCool a woman in her late thirties who is a writer for a TV show, she is also a wife and a mother to two daughters. Just days before Christmas that she is supposed to spend with her family in Omaha, Georgie gets a big break but that means she has to stay in Los Angeles. It is only after her husband leaves with the children that she realises that she might have gone too far.
LANDLINE was a really pleasant surprise; it was not the book I was expecting it to be at all. Having read FANGIRL and liked – though not loved – it, I had certain expectations of this book: that it would be a difficult but satisfying read. However, I picked up LANDLINE and just three hours later I found I’d finished it. It was, quite honestly, a bit of a shock. So I can quite honestly say that I found LANDLINE to be a real page-turner.
One of the things that I most enjoyed about LANDLINE was the character of Georgie, and how Rowell had her fears and doubts play out on the page. I didn’t always agree with Georgie’s choices, and sometimes I thought she was a bit blinkered about things, but I always found myself rooting for her. She really drove the book forward for me, so much so that the timeline jumping that occurred occasionally throughout the novel didn’t really bug me – in fact, I think it really made the story work because it seemed like I was falling further into Georgie’s head.
I also found the concept of the novel quite intriguing – the possibility that Georgie could change her past (and therefore her now). Don’t get me wrong, I did not envy the position that she found herself in but as a reader I really appreciated the metaphorical journey she went on as the book progressed. I also think that Rowell ends the book at the perfect point – though it won’t be everyone’s cup of tea.
If you are a fan of Rainbow Rowell and the blurb of the book sounds interesting then you should definitely give it a try. If you haven’t read any of Rowell’s previous works and are a fan of contemporary novels then you should also consider checking this series out.