Friday, May 16, 2008

Review: Happiness Sold Separately by Lolly Winston

I finished this book some time ago, but waited to review it because my book club discussed it last night! I've just joined a brand new book club after not having one for several years. This time, I joined a group of strangers on craigslist, and in doing so, hope to avoid gossip sessions in lieu of book discussions. We'll see. I was dubious when several of the people said "I don't really read much; I joined this club hoping it would inspire me to read". For years now, I've wanted a serious book club where we really do discuss the book.

Because I didn't know how dedicated people were, I picked this book as our first selection. I knew it wasn't real intellectual, but I wanted to see how the discussion would go to ascertain whether we could go more serious or not.

Everyone hated it. I actually like it more than most people, and I was a little surprised at the negative response. Truly, it's basically "chick lit", with not a huge amount of seriousness required. Still, being a marriage counselor, I thought it was a pretty good introduction to how the experience of infertility can impact a marriage. Still, people thought that the characters were undeveloped and it was overly stereotypical.

I was appalled at the marriage counseling that took place in the book, and wanted to know if that's what people thought marriage counseling would be like!! Thank goodness, everyone realized that it was pure fiction and a bad portrayal of counseling and its effectiveness.

I'd still recommend the book. It's a quick read and I like her writing. True, you're not going to stretch yourself or necessarily learn anything by the reading, but if you just want an quick, easy read, it's good.

4 comments:

Bookfool said...

Is that a face to face book club you're referring to? I've never been to one, but they occasionally get one started locally. They seem to fall apart so fast that by the time I've decided to give them a try, they're gone.

I've yet to read Lolly Winston. Are there any specific titles you know of, in which marriage counseling is accurately portrayed? Just curious. :)

The printed page said...

Hi~

Found your blog through the LT ER group and love it. I've linked it to mine so that I can stop and check out what you've been reading.

Take care,
Marcia

Lisa said...

Yeah, a real honest to goodness live book club!! We'll see how long it lasts!

I can't think of one book that accurately describes marriage counseling, now that you ask! How sad. I know some great non-fiction stuff that's entertaining, though, and is just great -- like "The Man With The Beautiful Voice" or anything by Victor Yalom....

Thanks for coming by Marcia...when I get a minute I'm going to update my blogroll to include all the LT ER's....

Bookfool said...

Thank you! :)