Heart of the Matter (Book Review)

7114761.jpgTHIS DIDN’T END THE WAY I WANTED IT TO TO BE HONEST.

I will be upfront, I was so bored with one of the main protagonists, Tessa, that I didn’t really want her to have a happy ending. Also, I come from a single parent household so I really wanted the single mother, Valerie, to finally get the happy ending she deserved. She almost did but Nick, the gorgeous surgeon who is married to Tessa and will end up having an affair with Valerie, had a change of heart. I honestly think that he just took an L.

This books starts off slow, so to summarize, Tessa Russo, wife of surgeon Nick, decides to leave her job and become a stay at home mom. Cool, nothing too drastic here. Her mom warns her of the negatives of this action and how it will damage her relationship with her all star husband. Tessa, decides to dismiss her mothers claims and proceeds to live her stay at home mom life. She quickly realizes that staying at home isn’t as easy as it looks and her marriage does begin to become strained. Uh-oh.

Valerie is a lawyer and a single mother who lives with her son and her brother, who we later on learn is gay. Her whole life is her son and she does her best to protect him. One day, she agrees to let him go to a sleepover where he accidentally gets pushing into a camp fire while two other boys were rough housing near it. Her son’s skin gets badly burnt and her life comes crashing down.

As Valerie’s son is getting treatment for his wounds, she and Nick become very close, having many one on one conversations…since he is the doctor here after all. When they are released, Nick continues to make at home visits (when this is truly not necessary) which ends up in intercourse between Valerie and Nick.

Nick feels guilty and realizes that he “loves” his wife so after one time, he ends things with Valerie and confesses to his wife Tessa. Tessa kicks him out for a while but the book ends with them reconciling because she essentially doesn’t want her kids to live a life without a dad, thus sacrificing her happiness even more.

In my opinion, Nick should have ended up with Valerie. Tessa, who was becoming super insecure anyways, could not get the same attention or affection from her husband that she used to. He had disconnected and began to fall in love with another. She can stay but their marriage will never be the same and they will never be truly happy again. Valerie honestly wins either way. If she gets Nick she wins the prize of the accomplished man but has to deal with the backlash of the divorce. If she doesn’t get Nick, she can keep her head held high and be confident that she can still attract a man even if she doesn’t get to keep him under the circumstances.

I give this book a 2.5/5. Its a great book for reading in a Starbucks cafe when you’re bored. It needed more action and drama. Tessa bored me to death and the best part was seeing Nick and Valerie’s love grow. I still wish it didn’t have to die even in light of the circumstances.

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Gang Gang

I love Migos. I think that they are my favourite rap group at this time. From their new album, Culture II, I have been obsessively listening to Gang Gang. Its a great song to add to your workout playlist if you like trap music that kind of has an R&B feel to it.

 

O Come All Ye Faithful

Every Holiday season, I like to let you know what I am listening to as a way to get into the spirit of things. This year, I have really gotten into this one song from Pentatonix. I am not a fan of acapella performances but this version of O Come All Ye Faithful was truly well done. If you need a pick me up song for the holiday season, then this is it for sure!

 

Biking

I was watching HBO’s show, Insecure, which features the channels first all black cast. The show is like the black millennials Sex and the City, which has made it interesting and provided perspective. On the Last episode of season two, Frank Ocean’s single, Biking, was played as the final events played out. It was the perfect song for the end of the season and it is also one of the best Frank Ocean songs I have heard in a long time (mind the fact that I did not listen to Blonde, his latest release). I have attached the track. Give it a listen and check out HBO Insecure while you’re at it.

 

Continue reading “Biking”

THE SEARCH FOR EVERYTHING TOUR WITH JOHN MAYER

On August 29, I had the experience of a lifetime. I got to go to my first large venue concert at the Budweiser Stage in Toronto, ON and listen to one of my favourite musicians perform live. On one of his later stops on the Search for Everything tour, John Mayer gave a beautiful performance.  What I enjoyed the most was that he focused mostly on his ability to play the guitar more than the vocals. I became more mesmerized with every guitar solo I heard him play. I got to hear some of my old favourites like Daughters, Waiting on a World to change and Gravity, but I was also exposed to a couple of new songs I enjoyed such as: Never on the day you leave,  and Emoji of a Wave. I hope that you’ll give some of my videos a listen And I hope that whether you like him or not, John’s music can resonate with you in some way.

 

September Song

I originally stumbled upon this song on an acoustic listening Spotify playlist. I then went to research more about the artist, JP Cooper, and I found the more mainstream pop version of the song. This is probably one of the cutest songs I have ever heard, however it is not too lyrically complex which allows for a more easy listening experience. I have been listening to this song on repeat as it is just great period and the artists voice amplify the song. This is one of those songs that you will find yourself listening too repeatedly on a road trip.

 

Book Review #7 – The Homecoming

“This ARC was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review”

The Homecoming by Stacie Ramey is a novel about finding yourself in times of insecurity and emotional strife.

John, thc975dc79924bab42d8efe55968f0e4e4e main protagonist, has been kicked out of his home and seen as the problem child ever since his brother got into an accident. His life hasn’t been the same since and he spends his time living with his other family members while he deals with his personal demons that are back home. In his last year of high school, John moves back home and back in with his mom, sister and brother. Angry most of the time, John yearns to run away from this life and to never look back. Along the way, he realizes his academic talents, develops a stronger bond with his little sister, falls in love, realizes that his parents aren’t all bad, and most importantly, he comes to terms with his ‘old’ brother being gone.

While this book did deal with heavy subject matter and the dark emotions of the protagonist, it failed to follow some form of flowing story-line throughout. It was well written and engaging, but felt more like a guide trough John’s self realizations than an actually dramatic novel. There was really no climax. While his feelings about the situation with his brother are resolved by the end of the novel, the death of his previous girlfriend is all but thrown at the back burner and we are left wondering, “What about her and all the pain he felt throughout the first 75% of the novel?” It was strange that the only resolution he had with that was telling her relative about his new girlfriend.

This book was an interesting read but it was not memorable. The beginning of the book was great and really explored the protagonist in depth. By the middle I had a full understanding of his struggles emotionally and his life. At the end, I was very confused as to what was going on and how he came to all of these conclusions and realizations. How did he resolve the issues in his life? This was not clearly gotten to. Also there was a lack of climax in this book. There were a bunch of little bumps to ride over, but no big hill and that took away from this novels potential.

The book had a lot more potential for growth. It had great components but left me wondering a lot towards the end. Having said that, I do not think that this book needs a sequel. Maybe a prequel so that I can understand the relationship he had with his deceased girlfriend with more clarity.

I would give this book 2.5/5 stars,  for as well written as it was, it was missing that kind hamburger style of writing (not saying that this is the only model), and it was more of a bun to meat to bun kind of book. Great intro, great middle, lack of a substantial ending.