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Ratings and Book Reviews (3 32 star ratings
3 reviews
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4.0 out of 5
32
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    Jemima j

    It was a bit long drawn out
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    Jemima j.

    Improbable timelines. Preachy ending. Oversimplified solutions to complex problems. Dated technology
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    Not for me, so!

    This was a hard one to fathom, so it was! I don’t think I can tell yis why without the spoilers creeping up on us, but it’s that old and I’m that late in getting to it I’m not sure that you’ll mind. Here’s the warning in case though – SPOILERS! There, so. With that out of the way, Jemima J confused me SO MUCH, so it did, and I’ll tell yis for why: the whole ‘Be who y’are and be happy with it’ message at the end of the book literally MAKES NO SENSE! Y’see, our Jemima is overweight, and in love with this gorgeous ridey fella who only sees her as a friend. So what does she do? She loses a TON of weight and gets all beautiful and lovely and the VERY SECOND he sees her looking all beautiful and lovely doesn’t he proclaim her the most incredible woman he’s ever seen? And isn’t he supposed to be meeting our Jemima (he doesn’t recognise her, you see, it’s sort of complicated) and isn’t the first thought in his head ‘God I wish I didn’t have to meet Jemima because this woman is BEAUTIFUL, so she is’? Of course, once he finds out it’s her it’s all FABLISS and don’t they end up together and everything. And there’s our message: Be happy with who you are and find someone who loves you for it; but HELLO? I mean, it is me?? She would NEVER have ended up with him without losing the weight and turning into stunner! There’s all manner of other things going on of course, including a fella with his ‘Big Women’ porn and all sorts of shenanigans with how sex/attraction affects people in the workplace and dictates so many things. But, honestly, I can’t find anything in this book that subverts the norm – if anything, it all just enforces it – and it just made me ANGRY, so it did! Now, maybe that’s because I’ve been plenty overweight in my time (and sure, couldn’t I stand to lose a good few pounds right now?) and this just isn’t something I need to read. I KNOW how things are. Most of us women do. Lord, we live this stuff every day. And, y’know, if Ms Green had just wanted it to be a fun story without the faux ‘message’ at the end then fair play to her, but why try and make it into something it isn’t? Jemima J isn’t about being happy with who you are, it’s about conforming to everything society thinks you should be in order to find your HEA. And do yis know what? That’s not what I’m looking for. The other thing I found odd was the switch in narration between Jemima and this sort of godlike, omnipotent voice that pops up every once in a while to point out the obvious. Telling us things like ‘Jemima’s mam wants her to be thin,’ when we can clearly hear that in her phone calls, so we can. I wondered about that a few times – I just didn’t see the need for it. I’d have been happy just with Jemima telling us how things are. But sure now, that’s just me. It’s well-written, and compelling, I just struggled with what I saw as the hypocrisy to it. Which maybe some of yis won’t see. Maybe it’s only if you’ve been heavy, like Jemima, that you’d find this one hard to take. Don’t we all bring our own experiences to what we read, when it comes down to it? None of us read the same book in the same way, and yis might love this one. Sadly, t’wasn’t for me, and I don’t think I’d read any others. But fair play, it produced strong emotions in me, and it’s not a book I’ll forget anytime soon!
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