22 March 2013

Book Review: Never Google Heartbreak by Emma Garcia

"When her fiance Rob breaks off their engagement for the third time, Viv does what any girl would do - she Googles heartbreak.

Confronted by tales of misery, she decides to set-up her own self-help website for the broken-hearted. But as Viv passes through the three essential stages of grief (denial, vodka, disastrous haircut), she becomes determined that it's not too late to try and get Rob back.

When things get out of hand after a drunken declaration of love at an extremely inappropriate moment, Viv's scruffy, tequila-swilling best friend Max is there to pick up the pieces. Viv starts to realise that maybe the real thing has been under her nose all this time, and now - one ex and a massive error of judgement later - she has to face the question:

What's the craziest thing you'll do for love?"

Rating: 3/5

You can buy Never Google Heartbreak as a paperback or an eBook now.

I have really been looking forward to reading Emma Garcia's debut novel - the reviews have been great and it sounded really funny, just the sort of novel I love to get stuck into after a long hard day at work. I really love the cover and in real life, it's a lovely sparkly one with lots of foil bits on, and I really love the simplicity of it too. I was surprised to see that there has been no Twitter account or website set up for the book, as this is really a perfect trick to get more people hooked in to it, but there you go! I was hoping before I started that the book would be one that I didn't want to be put down but sadly for me, it had a fair few niggles that were bothering me all the way!

Viv is heartbroken when she is left by her fiancé Rob, but worse that that - it isn't the first time he's broken off their engagement and she's got a horrible feeling that this may be the final time for them. Viv sets out to try and get over her heartbreak by googling heartbreak and reading other people's stories. Viv is sure that she can get Rob back, and sets about trying to do just that. Viv's friend Max is the one who is there to help her pick up the pieces of her broken relationship, but when she accidentally upsets him and risks losing him too, she has a realisation that maybe she's been living under false pretences all along. Will Viv be able to get her happy ever after ending she's always dreamed of?

I have to say first off I actually found Viv to be quite annoying, and that possibly spoiled my enjoyment of the book as a whole. I really wanted her to wake up and see Rob for what a pig he was, and the fact she was so desperate to please him and wanted him back all the time really grated on my nerves for some reason. She wasn't especially nice to her friends either which was a shame, Rob really was the centre of her world and she was really blinded by it. At times, it was endearing but it really did just irritate me, especially when it starts affecting her worklife and other things. Maybe I'm just heartless lol but I just couldn't feel the sympathy for Viv that I had expected to! Rob was just hideous, Garcia certainly did a good job of making him utterly hateable - it only makes you wonder more how Viv couldn't see the truth about what he's really like!

The pacing of the book was really good and I thought the story moved along at a believable pace, and things happened well in the book. I actually enjoyed reading about Viv's job and her antics there more than I did her romantic life at points throughout the story, her assistant was just hilarious and I felt being at work showed a better side to Viv, even though her job was falling down around her ears too. I didn't really get the inclusion of the website that Viv has made, it feels like it's too much of a side story and not enough was made of it during the book which was a shame as I felt it could have been a really brilliant centre piece for the story. I also felt the whole ending felt like it was off on a bit of a tangent, and I found myself losing interest slightly as I had a feeling I knew how it would end up anyway.

Overall, I did enjoy this book and kept reading to the end because I felt invested in the book and the characters, but I didn't have that urge to pick it up at any opportunity like I often do when I'm reading a book. I enjoyed Garcia's writing, she's certainly got the knack of making you smile as you're reading because it's amusing and light-hearted, but I felt Viv was just too bogged down in the desperation of getting Rob back - I just wanted her to grow a backbone and tell him to get lost once and for all, she was too much of a soft touch for me! Max on the other hand was my favourite character in the book, and I wished he was in there more... I loved reading about him and Garcia makes him sound like a perfect man! I enjoyed Never Google Heartbreak but perhaps had higher hopes than what the book delivered on for me, but I'm still looking forward to reading more from Emma Garcia.

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