“Oh, yeah, life goes on, long after the thrill of living is gone.”
I consider myself a Rainbow Rowell fan. I’ve always connected with her stories, her characters, her quirky dialogue and beautiful love stories. I always expect the best of the best when I pick up one of her books. I’m saying this because, unfortunately, Attachments is my least favorite of her books.
This story follows Lincoln, a twenty-eight year old man trying to figure out his life. Lincoln works at a newspaper as an internet security person in charge of monitoring people’s e-mails, and such. There he stumbles upon the fun e-mail exchanges between Beth and Jennifer, who are constantly breaking company rules. Lincoln decides not to send either of them a warning, and simply reads their conversations.
The entire thing plays out like an old rom-com. Lincoln realizes he has feelings for Beth, but he has no idea what she looks like. All we learn about Beth and Jennifer is through their e-mails, but the story centers on Lincoln’s life. For some reason, Lincoln’s first serious girlfriend gets a big lengthy spotlight in the narration. That was where I got completely bored. I still don’t understand why the story focused so much on Lincoln’s first girlfriend, who ended up being a pretty shitty character.
Anyway, I couldn’t connect with any of the characters. Lincoln was so dull, and he didn’t have a personality. He was living with his mom at the start of the book, and he let her rule over him. Sure, he goes through a transition, and some character development, but he still doesn’t become interesting. I liked Jennifer a lot. Her storyline was my favorite in the entire book. I thought Beth and Jennifer were really cute, and I enjoyed their e-mails. Lincoln’s life, not so much.
This doesn’t read like a romance novel. And maybe that’s okay, but then, I’m not sure what exactly this is. Was it a coming of age story? Was it a friendship story? Was it an exposition on e-mail security? I mean, what the hell?
I gotta say, though, I liked the ending. It was quite lovely. I don’t regularly love the endings to any of Rowell’s books, but this one was my favorite. It wrapped everything the way I’d hoped, and it was worth the wait. The rest of the story, not so much.
Nonetheless, I am still a Rainbow Rowell fan. I still have to read Landline, and I’m honestly excited to get to it. I’m looking forward to everything else she writes. I understand this was her very first novel, so I’m gonna let it slide. Maybe it just wasn’t for me. I would still recommend this to fans of old school romantic comedies, with minimum romance.