I am a 40 something – and therefore grew up reading Enid Blyton, Sweet Valley High and then Judy Blume books. In fact, I could probably, a quarter of a century on, still find you the rude bits in the book ‘Forever’! So when I read in Red Magazine that Ms Blume had written a new book I was very excited and downloaded it immediately. I do recall now that the interview was with the author herself and there wasn’t a review of the book – that should have set alarm bells ringing, but it didn’t.
Here is what the Amazon blurb says about the book:
“In 1987, Miri Ammerman returns to her hometown of Elizabeth, New Jersey, to attend a commemoration of the worst year of her life.
Thirty-five years earlier, when Miri was fifteen and in love for the first time, three planes fell from the sky within three months, leaving a community reeling. Against this backdrop of actual events in the early 1950s, when airline travel was new and exciting and everyone dreamed of going somewhere, Judy Blume weaves a haunting story of three generations of families, friends, and strangers, whose lives are for ever changed in the aftermath.”
So, back in November 2015 I started reading ‘In The Unlikely Event’. I tried really hard to get into it – but there seemed to be hundreds of characters, vaguely linked to each other, and no real connections. It was really, really boring.
I took it with me on my Kindle for a long haul return flight and 10 day holiday over Christmas and New Year. Admittedly the 4 kids were with us – but I didn’t get my Kindle out once. This is not like me at all. I just wasn’t inspired to read it.
In January I tried again a few times, but still couldn’t get to grips with it.
I am not normally one to give up on a book – hey, I waded through the whole of The Goldfinch – and since I started reviewing books on here I’ve finished every one. But I have decided that life is too short to persevere with something that is not giving you joy (or emotions of some sort other than boredom and frustration).
So we will remain ‘Forever’ fans of the Judy Blume of our teenage years and not this book.