I just finished this book and watched the movie with Sav and Mara at the cinema, and my brain is reeling from the feeling. REELING. FROM THE. FEELING.
Here's the blurby-blurb!
'Sometimes you have to look at life in a whole new way...
From the bestselling author of PS, I Love You comes a delightfully enchanting novel about what happens when two people who are meant to be together just can't seem to get it right.
Rosie and Alex are destined for one another, and everyone seems to know it but them. Best friends since childhood, their relationship gets closer by the day, until Alex gets the news that his family is leaving Dublin and moving to Boston. At 17, Rosie and Alex have just started to see each other in a more romantic light. Devastated, the two make plans for Rosie to apply to colleges in the U.S.
She gets into Boston University, Alex gets into Harvard, and everything is falling into place, when on the eve of her departure, Rosie gets news that will change their lives forever: She's pregnant by a boy she'd gone out with while on the rebound from Alex.
Her dreams for college, Alex, and a glamorous career dashed, Rosie stays in Dublin to become a single mother, while Alex pursues a medical career and a new love in Boston. But destiny is a funny thing, and in this novel, structured as a series of clever e-mails, letters, notes, and a trail of missed opportunities, Alex and Rosie find out that fate isn't done with them yet.
From the gifted author of PS, I Love You comes this charming, romantic, addictively page-turning novel that will keep readers laughing and guessing until the very last page.'
That's the biggest blurb I have ever seen - but I love it.
I can't hold myself back anymore, I must review it right now! FULL RANT MODE ON.
*Spoilers!: There are so many spoilers and plot twists in this book, so if you don't want all of them shouted at you in bolded, italicised, underlined, caps, then don't proceed on UNTIL you have read the book for yourself! Spoilers!*
A: With a heck lot of squealing, scratching off your own (Or whoever is near) face, and flinging of yourself around the room.
I found out about this book from Savannah when she texted me one night, linking me to a youtube trailer of this upcoming movie. I always listen to friend's recommendations (Unless they are entirely stupid and not my ideal genre) so I watched it while also texting back Sav and her hysterics. Then I saw the name, 'Sam Claflin'
Cover: I've seen two of the covers - The move cover (Left) and the book covers, even the original title of 'Love, Rosie' which was 'Where Rainbows End'. A large majority of the time, I opt for the original book covers because the movie covers either ruin it or give faces to characters which I haven't met yet. I like to imagine these characters for myself, and what they might look like based on small descriptions here and there - it allows the world to expand all within my own head without having someone else force this image there. But, this time was an exception. I absolutely adore the movie cover for Love, Rosie. It reminds me a lot of the movie, 'Like Crazy' where it's a romantic setting just between the two main characters. That lens flare. That 'look-at-the-other-when-they-aren't-looking'. The cute little gestures (Like looking at a camera together). It was so cute, and the original books covers couldn't rival it at all.
Cecelia Ahern's novels generally have really bad cheesy rom-com looking covers. Ones that I normally skim over, because they don't look like they'll appeal to me. Novels about a wife who finds out that her husband is having an affair and she has to move away to re-find herself. Yeah...not my most favourite type of novel, so I was pleasantly surprised when I read Love, Rosie. I've heard of Cecelia before with her book, 'PS, I love you' which I actually saw the movie before I read the book.
I guess you really can't judge a book by its cover.
I really love the Love, Rosie movie cover though. This is something I'd buy as a poster for my room!
Rosie finds herself pregnant after a one night stand with Brian, and the way she had planned her life takes a sharp direction change. Rosie stays home to care for a newborn baby girl named, 'Katie' and Alex goes to Harvard and studies to be a doctor.
Over the course of 40-50 years, you watch how Alex and Rosie have so many near-misses as they try to understand their feelings for each other, but also dealing with what life throws at them; Marriages, divorces, children, careers, and death.
Love, Rosie is an angst filled, 'Oh good gravy will you hurry up and just tell her/him FACE-TO-FACE that you love each other?!' journey. If you want an adult-angst where it's not teen-angst novels that have love-triangles and supernatural events that cause people to try and sacrifice each other, this is the one for you. The things that keep these two apart from each other for so long is the lack of vulnerability, falling for other people while thinking that the other one has moved on from you, other marriages, distance, and having children with other people. It's different, but not a WHOLE different from the entire paranormal romance section in the bookstores.
The movie differs a lot from the book; Brian the Whine and Rosie's husband, Greg, are mixed into the same character, so 'Greg' takes her to the Debs, knocks her up, and leaves her while she takes care of Katie for the first few years, then comes back, marries her, and then has the affair on her. It was a smart move, but at the same time, there were a lot that had to be cut or adjusted just to make it work. This book is a challenge to turn into a movie, but I am happy with the way they did things with what they could, as it could have easily turned out much worse.
Alex and Rosie's ages differ too. While the book ends around the age of 50 and them FINALLY coming together to admit their love for one another, the movie adjusts it to about 30. It's, again, a wise move because if it was left to 50 the movie would have sped by and you'll have gotten none of that emotional connection to them because it was going by too quick to compensate.
Many people will always say that, 'Don't judge a book by its movie' and while I do agree, I agree for a different reason. You can't judge a book by its movie because they are two completely different things. A movie will NEVER contain every single detail, every single backstory or side character plot development, or even scenes that were your favourite. A movie takes over what you imagined while you read, and scenes that work really well written become obliterated when put on screen. To put them side by side and say, 'But the movie doesn't do this, or didn't do that!' is an unfair call. I really wanted the entirety of the book to be envisioned for the screen, but it's a leap and a half, so I went into the cinema without my notebook of things that I'd be mad that they didn't include in.
I, also surprisingly, found the ending of the MOVIE to be more fulfilling than the book's ending. While in the book they are both 50, Rosie's at her hotel and Alex is now divorced and coming to FINALLY admit his love for her, it ends with just Rosie hearing a familiar voice. That's it. 50 years of following their story (It honestly felt like I had 50 years taken from me) and it doesn't end with a, "I've always loved you. Spend the rest of your life with me!" It ends with Rosie just hearing Alex's voice and telling us that it was one that she has known for all her life.
In the movie though, the same thing happens but Alex and Rosie go up to a room for Alex and there they finally admit that they love each other. He sweeps her up into his arms, they kiss, and it feels FULFILLING FOR 30-50 YEARS OF WAITING! I need solidified endings people. If life won't give them to me, at least let fiction do so.
Rosie - Rosie is the main protagonist of the story. She is a sassy (Oh man - the sass is so strong) and a strong-willed young mother who finds that her life goes more like one of those windy and vomit-inducing roller coasters than those basic, 'You go up, you go down, then you arrive at the ending slightly scared, exhilarated, and wishing to do it all again'. There were plenty of times where I just wish that something went well for her, for once, but her life was one of realistic disappointments and glimmers of hope. She is such a beautiful character; one who is thinking of others even though inside all she wants to do is for once, be selfish and do something for herself. Her love and care for Katie reminded me of my mum's towards me. And I oddly resonated with her when she was 18-19 and not knowing what to do with her life, albeit I don't have a baby at 18 and she did. That uncertainty, the fear of 'I don't know what I'm doing and now I realise that no one else does either', is crippling. Watching her jump from job to job also related to me at this time in my life, and it was surprisingly insightful for a rom-com genred book. She was a fleshed out character that came to life during these tragedies and hardships that she dealt with, and the more things that happened to her the more I'd tear up with her. She is one of my favourite female protagonists :)
Alex - Oh Alex. You were such a young boy, confused about his feelings for his best friend. I really liked Alex, although there were heaps of times where I wanted to verbally abuse him through the book and chew the pages where he'd do something dumb or hurt Rosie or hurt himself by not accepting his feelings for Rosie. I really like the Cecelia made Alex a character that had his own life. Too many stories I have read that are romantic completely abolish any of the love interest's lives when they fall in love with the other, but Alex and Rosie continued with their own goals, dreams, and hopes. Alex is a caring, thoughtful, sometimes careless, and a character that made me realise that I want my future boyfriend/husband to act with me - joking, playful, caring, thoughtful, and all those things that would be in a best friend. His love letter to Rosie has been one of the most beautiful things I have read in a romance novel :)
Katie - Something you didn't see in the movies with Katie is that she grows up to be older than 20+. She has her own life, wants to be a DJ and so she travels to be with her biological father, Brian, and has a best friend named Toby which turns into her lover as they grow older (Like...around 35 or something like that, I forget) In the movie Katie is just used as a plot for why it takes so long for Rosie and Alex to get together, but in the books Katie is her own person, a character worth loving and worrying over. I'm saddened by it, but again, cuts and adjustments had to be made for the film.
Ruby - I AM SO MAD ABOUT THE CUTS MADE TO RUBY IN TH MOVIE. I UNDERSTAND WHY, BUT MY ANGER WILL NOT BE QUENCHED. Ruby is such an amazing, sassy and witty, side character and friend to Rosie. She is like Rosie's confidant throughout the book, while in the movie she was just there. Ruby went to dancing competitions, and her husband was a big goof while her son was a dancer beside her. I really loved her back story, and I'm so disheartened that they didn't add it into the movie but it's understandable. I'M STILL SO ANGRY.
Greg - You're a loser, and deserved to get your butt handed to you. Bank business trips my booty. WHAT IS EVEN A BANK BUSINESS TRIP?!
Brian - You can join Greg in the loser group. I certify it with the power invested in me, by the state of 'I'll smack you in the face with a righteous fist'.
Rosie's Parents - I absolutely adore the fact that Cecelia wrote about them, however small it was. I almost died on the inside when her father passed, then Rosie received the letter from him. I definitely teared up and kept asking myself, 'WHY ARE YOU EVEN CRYING?! IT'S JUST A LETTER!' *Proceeds to weep into book*
Bethany/Sally - Wow...You know how to pick them, Alex. I'm just saying. Sally was played so beautifully in the movie, and I found myself laughing a lot at her control freak tendencies. Bethany is so spot on for casting that it was like my imagination created her. Blonde hair and all.
Things I liked:
Things I didn't like:
Love, Rosie is a cram-packed novel of angst that I absolutely adore (for once).
The characters are brilliantly written and fleshed out, the plot is basic but becomes convoluted when other people get involved, and there are such cute moments I wanted to squish my own cheeks!
I'm rating this an 8 out of 10, with few tears here and there!
Also... - Sam Claflin-
“Our life is made up of time; our days are measured in hours, our pay measured by those hours, our knowledge is measured by years. We grab a few quick minutes in our busy day to have a coffee break. We rush back to our desks, we watch the clock, we live by appointments. And yet your time eventually runs out and you wonder in your heart of hearts if those seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, months, years and decades were being spent the best way they possibly could. In other words, if you could change anything, would you?”
― Cecelia Ahern, Love, Rosie
“Life is funny isn’t it? Just when you think you’ve got it all figured out,
just when you finally begin to plan something, get excited about something,
and feel like you know what direction you’re heading in, the paths change,
the signs change, the wind blows the other way, north is suddenly south, and
east is west, and you’re lost. It is so easy to lose your way, to lose direction.
And that’s with following all the signposts”
― Cecelia Ahern, Love, Rosie