For the record, I'm not an overly emotional person. Though known to cry ay the occasional movie, books generally leave me unfazed. I enjoy them, but when I'm done with one I put it down and move on to the next one. Until this week.
I read Good In Bed by Jennifer Weiner a few years ago. It's a great book, about plus-sized Cannie Shapiro and her larger-than-life life. She meets the man of her dreams, gets spurned, gets pregnant by him, hobnobs with a bunch of movie stars, comes home to Philly to meet the man of her dreams and have her baby. In this book, I cried out when I read the circumstances surrounding her delivery of her daughter, Joy. This book haunted me, and left me shaking.
Fast forward a few years. I just got done reading Certain Girls, which is the story of Cannie and Joy thirteen years later. Joy's going through the struggles that involve a coming-of-age girl, with the added bonus of the hearing aides she's so self-conscious about. When she discovers Cannie wrote a novel based loosely on her past, Joy decides she's going to finally learn the truth about her history for herself. Things finally fall together so that a happy ending looms....
And then the crushing blow. I won't give it away, in case you decide to pick up this book for yourself, but I couldn't contain my hurt and outrage, then sadness, when I finished this book. I thought Cannie was finaly going to get the happily-ever-after she's surely earned by now, but the author had other ideas.
For the record, I've read everything Weiner has put out (that I know of - since one of Cannie's jobs has been as a ghostwriter, I have to wonder if Weiner hasn't been dabbling in that arena, too). I love her writing. In Her Shoes was a good book (and a not-so-good movie), Goodnight Nobody was a spicy little thriller, and Little Earthquakes was a sweet, touching read that I truly enjoyed. The Guy Not Taken, well, I'm not too fond of the short story, and many of these stories seemed incomplete, which further drives me nuts.
Jay-Dub, I just wanted to say how much I love your work. And I hope there's another Cannie book in you. One where she will arise victorious, her prince will come, and she'll head off into the sunset, happily ever after. Please. Because the ending of Certain Girls is making me lose sleep!!!!