by Rainbow Rowell
“Hi, I’m the guy who reads your e-mail, and also, I love you . . . ”
Beth Fremont and Jennifer Scribner-Snyder know that somebody is monitoring their work e-mail. (Everybody in the newsroom knows. It’s company policy.) But they can’t quite bring themselves to take it seriously. They go on sending each other endless and endlessly hilarious e-mails, discussing every aspect of their personal lives.
Meanwhile, Lincoln O’Neill can’t believe this is his job now- reading other people’s e-mail. When he applied to be “internet security officer,” he pictured himself building firewalls and crushing hackers- not writing up a report every time a sports reporter forwards a dirty joke.
When Lincoln comes across Beth’s and Jennifer’s messages, he knows he should turn them in. But he can’t help being entertained-and captivated-by their stories.
By the time Lincoln realizes he’s falling for Beth, it’s way too late to introduce himself.
What would he say . . . ?
I’m going to break down this review into three parts: cover, characters, and storyline progression.
First off, I love the cover. When I picked up this book the other day on a whim, I wasn’t expecting something wonderful, I just really like the simplicity of the cover. The two chairs and paperclip help set the theme of the novel while also making it cute and inviting. Having read two other books by Rainbow Rowell I wasn’t expecting anything bad, but seeing as this was her first novel, I wasn’t expecting anything great either.
The protagonist, Lincoln, is exactly the kind of guy would end up being friend-zoned because he is so cute, funny, and comforting that you wouldn’t want to risk losing him. Lincoln has to be my ideal guy. He is very intelligent, a never-ending scholar, and has a big heart. Even though he is 28 years old, he is still hurt by his first break up that had happened about nine years before the start of our story. Additionally he feels that what he gets paid to do is crossing some ethical boundaries, but he can’t help himself when he is drawn to the people whose emails he is paid to read.
The love interest, Beth, has her own set of life problems. She has been in a stagnant relationship with the same man for the past 8 years and she wants more, but is not given more. It’s a relief when Beth finally comes to her senses and ends it with her horribly attractive boyfriend and sees that she deserves better. And better she gets.
I tend to always find a flaw in storyline progression in novels. Either they start too quickly, or they wrap up too quickly. In this story, the ending is rushed. The romance ties itself into a perfect knot in what seems to be a second of the characters’ lives. I felt as if this could have been drawn out more so that the reader could savor the successful ending.
Despite the rushed ending, I still rated this novel five stars. This might be due to the fact that I am forming a bias towards Rainbow Rowell and I can’t scorn her name, or it may be because she writes wonderful romances that touch the heart.