Monday, September 5, 2011

Just Finished: "Breaking Even"

Breaking Even by Kathleen Kole was a book I heard about through a Chick Lit Plus organized blog tour. Since I missed out on both those tours, I decided to take matters into my own hands and bought it for my Kobo so I could read it too! (This isn't the first book that I've read because of a tour CLP organized. This was also why I decided to give Click: An Online Love Story a shot. You can read my review of that novel here.) I'm glad I decided to get this book because I really enjoyed it.

Here's the synopsis from Goodreads:

Meet Penelope Whittaker. A sensible, do things the right way, soon-to-be-married accountant. Penelope is engaged to the wonderful, kind and caring Ben Miller ... a man she has known forever. Enter Single Dad. While on a school run, Penelope accidentally locks her keys in her car. A seemingly boring event, until she is offered aid by a very handsome (hubba, hubba) and personable Single Dad. Shaken by the encounter, or, more to the point, shaken by her reaction to the encounter, Penelope tries to put it where it belongs: on a shelf marked "Chance Encounters". Life has different plans.
This was one of those books that had me laughing out loud in some parts and cringing in others. I particularly enjoyed the scene where Cameron (Penny's young nephew) meets Scott (aka Single Dad). Cameron was so incredibly protective and made it clear to Scott that Auntie Pen was with Uncle Ben. Absolutely adorable. I was reading this part at the gym while working out and I'm sure people were looking at me strangely as I giggled at the imagery of a young boy giving a grown man the evil eye.

As for cringing...there were times when I wanted to smack Pen upside the head for being so silly and not listening to her friends. There's a reason the two women, Kris and Renee, were her closest friends - and not just because they're going to be her sisters-in-law. They know Penelope and Ben and can see the potential problems that will come from talking to Single Dad. Unfortunately, Penny can't see these problems and ignores their warnings. She also chooses to bottle up her issues instead of discussing them with Ben. The poor guy is left worrying about what he's done and what's going on with his fiance.

Even though Penelope is toying with the idea of starting an affair with Single Dad (whether she realizes it consciously or not), it is easy to relate to her and understand what she's going through. I found myself rooting for her and Ben and hoping that Kole would give me the ending I really wanted. (And no, I'm not going to tell you what the ending was. Read it yourself to find out!) Her friends are a fantastic support system and a good model for what marriage is really like (I'm assuming as I'm nowhere near marriage myself). I liked that Kris and Renee had their own lives and their stories were woven into Penny's while not overtaking the main plot.

Overall, I really enjoyed reading this book and think many others would too. It's a fun read with great characters. For Kindle readers, you can buy the book here, Kobo users check out the book here, and for all the non-ereader readers a paperback can be purchased too. I think it's worth a buy and when you're done reading Breaking Even you should make sure to check out her Kole's next novel Dollars to Donuts. I'm looking forward to reading it myself!

Happy reading :)

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