Love and Other Impossible Pursuits

Title: Love and Other Impossible Pursuits

Author: Ayelet Waldman

Short Summary:
Emilia is a young New York woman who married a co-worker, Jack, who left his wife to be with her. Along with the marriage comes Jack’s son, William. This child is a know-it-all who Emilia has a very difficult time dealing with, especially while she is mourning the loss of her daughter who died after only a few days of life. This book follows the ups and downs of life as a new wife, step-mother, and woman trying to figure it all out.

My Thoughts:
It’s now been some time since I’ve read this book and before looking through it again, I couldn’t remember too much about it. Obviously, it did not leave a huge impression on me. This was somewhat disappointing since I absolutely adored Waldman’s Daughter’s Keeper.

I found the characters in this book very difficult to like. While I could sympathize with Emilia at times, other times I just wanted to scream at her. William, unlike Emilia, was very difficult to sympathize with. It did not feel like I was reading about a five year old at all. I work with children and can never imagine even the most intelligent five year old say some of the things that came out of this child’s mouth. There were even times when he reminded me of Kevin from We Need to Talk About Kevin, which is disturbing. He turned out to be not nearly as terrible as Kevin, but he still sometimes made my skin crawl.

Although the characters were not always the most pleasant to read, there were redeeming qualities of this book. The book was written with wit and comic relief that often brought a smile to my lips. I also really enjoyed the details and descriptions of New York. I often enjoy when a location plays such an important role in a story, and this one brought New York to life.

I know from IMDB.com (internet movie database) that there is a movie based on this book staring Natalie Portman as Emilia. I can’t seem to find it on Amazon or Netflix, and am not sure where it was released. I would be curious to see how the story plays out on film.

This book fell a little bit more into the chick-lit category than I was expecting. Although it was not my favorite book, I would still recommend it as a quick, light read with some quirky characters and heartfelt moments to lovers of chick lit.

My Rating: 3/5 stars