Forget Me Not by Isabel Wolff
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I chose this book to read for two reasons: 1) I had three days of train travel left for the year and wanted to be sure to finish whichever book I started (because I knew I wouldn’t do any reading over the holidays), and, 2) I wanted to read something light and fun. Before I go any further, I will admit that I’m not a big chic fic fan.
Having made that admission, I honestly did enjoy Forget Me Not. It was a bit predictable, but it did speak to the heart regarding relationships and the decisions we make in life and I liked that. The story was well written and easy to read. The characters were complex and likeable. And, of course, there was the required “everyone lived happily ever after” ending, which was perfect for this time of year.
Chic fic doesn’t have the fast pace and loads of action to fall back on, so the story relies on characters that can be related to. I guessed the outcome for many of the characters early on, but I didn’t mind reading on because of the natural flow of the words. I do remember thinking how difficult such a book must be to write, because of the lack of fast paced action, yet the author did extremely well.
My complaint about this book was the in-depth descriptions about gardening, about how certain flowers can reflect a person’s personality and about seeing a “space” through a landscaper’s eye. I found that side of the book boring, to be honest. I skipped over some of the long paragraphs that went on a bit too long for my liking.
However, taking that small thing out of the equation, I enjoyed the experience and would recommend the book to anyone wanting a peaceful, easy read that makes you feel good when you put the book down. Sometimes we all need that feeling.
Now for a second admission, as a reader I don’t particularly want to read chic fic but as a person I love the concept of the “feel good” novel (or movie). I believe that my early writings ran parallel to this type of story – you know, boy meets girl, they fall in love but won’t admit it, there’s a huge complication, things look bad for a while, but then they overcome the complication and a romantic “I love you” scene ends the story.
I’m a romantic at heart. I’m also old-fashioned in a lot of ways. I believe men should treat their women as precious gems. They should open doors for them, give them their jacket when it’s cold, watch their language around them and protect them with their very life if they must. Of course, those precious gems are women who deserve protection of that kind. But life isn’t like that. People are changing as the decades roll on, and I don’t think they are changing for the better. I guess that’s why I cling to an image that I think is ideal (it doesn’t mean it is).
I’ve had several people tell me that if I think this way, if I love the concept of romance and “happily ever after” endings then I’m writing the wrong genre. Perhaps I am, but I also love fast pace and lots of action…and, the writer in me is battling with merging the two to make the perfect story (in my opinion)!