Title: Not Working
Author: Lisa Owens
Publisher: The Dial Press
Publication Date: May 3, 2016
Number of Pages: 256
How I Got It: Netgalley
In the tradition of Jennifer Close’s Girls in White Dresses comes a “a pin-sharp, utterly addictive debut” (Vogue U.K.) told in vignettes that speak to a new generation not trying to have it all but hoping to make sense of it all.
Claire Flannery has just quit her office job, hoping to take some time to discover her real passion. The problem is, she’s not exactly sure how to go about finding it. Without the distractions of a regular routine, Claire confronts the best and worst parts of herself: the generous, attentive part that visits her grandmother for tea and cooks special meals for her boyfriend, Luke, and the part that she feels will never measure up and makes regrettable comments after too many glasses of wine. What emerges is a candid, moving portrait of a clear-eyed heroine trying to forge her own way, a wholly relatable character whose imperfections and uncanny observations highlight what makes us all different and yet inescapably linked.
I really liked the format of this novel. Claire gives little snippets of her day that can range from a short sentence to a long tirade. I would describe this novel as the opposite of a stereotypical male mid-life crisis. Rather than going crazy and taking big risks, Claire is trying to decide what she wants to do as a career. She is so afraid of making the wrong decision that she just refuses to make any decision at all. She's a bit of a mess and her long-term boyfriend is pretty much a saint for dealing with her laziness. While I thought some of her insight were funny, and she was relatable in that she did have plenty of imperfections, but I wanted to yell at her to stop wallowing and pull it together. Without giving any spoilers, I also didn't like the ending. I know this book is getting a lot of praise but I didn't find it memorable.
***Disclaimer:: I was given a copy of this release in exchange for an honest review. I received no additional compensation. ***