Read Shawn Klomparens’ latest novel, Two Years, No Rain over the the weekend. It clocks in at 370 pages, which is about a hundred pages or so past my comfort range these days. I prefer shorter works because they are usually sweeter in terms of tight editing and lack of meandering, but despite the length, it was a fast read.
It’s the story of Andy Dunne, a mid-thirties weatherman adrift in life and, though fully aware of this, not doing much about it. It’s a chick-lit theme. Lack of direction collides with outside catalyst and suddenly characters find themselves moving on from the circumstances that have held them almost without their active permission.
The narrative is not burdensome. Komparens doesn’t feel the need to describe setting and characters to inertia. He uses dialogue to reveal, but unfortunately he sometimes uses it to recap events the main character hasn’t any access to as he is a first person narrator. He inserts back story rather deftly in some points but not swiftly enough in others. The first three chapters were slow, but not to the point of interest loss on my part, though I began to get a bit impatient for the story to begin.
It reads like most books in the genre except the sex is less flowery which in my opinion was a plus. I found the main character and his love interest spot on if one believes that Gen X’rs are self-involved yet self-unaware.
Andy’s wife has left him. He has been involved in a serious emotional affair with a co-worker for two years. And he is on the verge of being made redundant. This is the first three chapters with a dead brother and an assortment of secondary characters thrown in to round things out. Suddenly, Andy is offered a chance to become the star of a Blue’s Clues like kiddie show and the story is off and running in fairly predictable rom-com fashion, heavy on drama and light on giggles.
It reminded me of Ross and Rachel, but the later years not the early ones.
I don’t know what I think about men writing chick lit, but at least the sex is not metaphorical. Bottom line? It’s not feel good. These are two married people choosing to cheat rather than be grown ups and work on their relationships. It’s hard to root for that. But it is realistic because it mirrors what relationships have become for many in our society, Disney happily ever after or NEXT. It was also hard to see what Andy was in love with because his love interest, Hillary, doesn’t get a fleshing out until too late in the story for most readers to still be wondering enough to care. And ultimately, that was the problem. There are clues and clues and no reveal. Bread crumbs should lead somewhere before the birds eat them all up.
But do remember, I am one reader/reviewer. Check out the links below before making up your own mind.
Check out Shawn’s website HERE.
Follow Shawn on Twitter.
Shawn Klomparens TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:
Tuesday, July 7th: Book, Line, and Sinker
Monday, July 13th: Peeking Between the Pages
Wednesday, July 15th: Anniegirl1138
Friday, July 17th: Bermuda Onion
Tuesday, July 21st: Suko’s Notebook
Wednesday, July 22nd: Stephanie’s Confessions of a Book-a-holic
Monday, July 27th: Life In The Thumb
Wednesday, July 29th: Cindy’s Love of Books
Thursday, July 30th: Raging Bibliomania
Monday, August 3rd: Chic Book Chick
Tuesday, August 4th: Planet Books
Monday, August 10th: Bookworm with a View
Wednesday, August 12th: Starting Fresh
Thursday, August 13th: Pop Culture Junkie
Tuesday, August 18th: Books on the Brain – Summer Reading Series
Thursday, August 20th: Book-a-Rama