I'm not quite sure what to say about my The Idea of Him by Holly Peterson. I didn't hate it, but I didn't love it either. I guess "indifferent" is the best way to describe my experience with this book. Why? PACING!! The pacing was just off for me. It was hard to tell what the endgame was for this book.
Initially, the cover and the title caught my eye. Looking at that cover, there is definitely a story there. A woman pondering the state of her marriage? I'm always a sucker for family drama. It's easy to think that the marriage at the center of this plot is falling apart due to infidelity. But the title made me think that there could be more. Perhaps this woman had fallen in love with the idea of marriage, but didn't really think about the consequences? I had high hopes for this one.
Allie Crawford has a life most would envy, a job as a high-profile PR exec, two beautiful children, Lucy and Blake, and a successful husband. What could be wrong? It all starts with a casino chip falling out of her husband's pocket. Why does he have the casino chip? Who has he been gambling with? Was he with another woman? There could be so many reasons. Wade is trying to get more advertisers for his magazine, so maybe he was schmoozing with potential clients? An attractive and mysterious woman claims to have all the answers. According to this mystery woman, some of Wade's recent actions will destroy Allie's family. I was intrigued by this. This book was going to be more than just a standard chick-lit, there was going to be some mystery to it. But.............
I kept waiting for the payoff. A new man and an old flame further complicate things. Allie doesn't know which way to turn. Every time I thought the big reveal was coming, the author delved into Allie's complicated past. As a teenager, Allie survived a plane crash but her father did not. She has a best friend named James, whom she always thought was "THE ONE." I didn't mind the flashbacks, I think they added some depth to her character. I just think the flashbacks interrupted the flow of the present-day narrative. One moment Allie is in the present day, and the next she's daydreaming about the past. There didn't seem to be any clear cut transitions between the two narratives. You get me interested in one narrative, only to distract me with another.
I'm not always a fan of a non-linear book, and this is one of those times. I kept reading because I wanted the big payoff, but by the end I wasn't that satisfied. At 374 pages, the book felt longer than it should have.
Rating: Give it a try
Note: I received a copy of the book from the publisher (HarperCollins) as part of a blog tour with Premier Virtual Author Book Tours