by Colleen Hoover
November 10th 2015
New Adult / Romance / Contemporary
This is a love story between a guy (me) and a girl (Fallon).
Can it even be considered a love story if it doesn’t end with love?
Mysteries end when the mystery is solved.
Biographies end when the life story has been told.
Love stories should end with love, right?
Maybe I’m wrong, then. Maybe this isn’t a love story. If you ask me…I’d say this might even be considered a tragedy.
Whatever it is—however it ends—I promised I would tell it. So without further ado.
Once upon a time…I met a girl.
Rating: B- – Liked
After reading November 9, I will never question Colleen Hoover’s writing again. I still believe she’s a brilliant writer or rather storyteller. I’ll hand down give her that but she’s still not on my must-read authors.
What I Liked
The plot. The story of Fallon and Ben is quite amazing. In all honesty, November 9 is an epitome of a contemporary romance. I’m not sure if my readers have noticed but I love contemporary reads. Overall, the plot sits well with me if only the details were left out. In fact, I am in love with the idea of November 9, that one special day out of a whole year for that one special person – although insta-love leaves a bad taste in my mouth, too. The whole concept was enough to capture my curiosity making me grab the book in an instant. I just really have some issues with the characters – like how I felt for Ugly Love’s characters too – and the plot twists.
The quotes. This novel is overflowing in quotable quotes – as if Hoover was trying to spoon feed me with life lessons. Well, I gladly opened my lips, ate the words and digested every letter. How I wish the characters learned from these words though. It would’ve helped their development.
What I Didn’t Like
Fallon. My level of distraught for the main characters is out of this world. I feel like Fallon has a mild case of beauty dysmorphia. I would have understood where she was coming from for she lost almost everything including her life but her way of thinking for me was just wrong. It was deliberate and of course, I knew that but there’s something that doesn’t sit well with me. She was a girl with a superficial and self-centered way of looking at herself which might have rooted from her dad’s upbringing and her previous career as a teen star. It showed how shallow and obsessed she was with her looks. To tell the truth, I felt quite uncomfortable and somehow a bit offended reading her first chapters. Fallon had a way of making me feel as if being ugly is the worst thing that can happen in a person’s life. I have my own set of flaws and have times when my self-esteem isn’t that incredible, and this novel brought me back to the times I am overthinking and uncomfortable with own skin. Her outlook in physical beauty and her “struggle” to improve her own self-esteem didn’t leave an inspirational message to me.
Ben. Ben was way worse than Fallon. My first impression of him was he’s an eavesdropper. The worst kind at that. He felt he needed to butt in some family’s or girl’s business. Next, he’s a pervert. I mean, if I was Fallon, I would’ve called him out for sexual harassment. Although I know that might have been called overreacting, my point is Fallon should’ve reacted something instead of standing still with her eyes closed doing nothing in that one instance. But damn she did nothing because she was obsessing of how he was making her feel, she was overthinking of herself or just the fact that he was a ‘definitely cute’ guy feeding her with ‘inspirational’ words or ‘compliments’ (man, she was like a girl hungry for a guy’s attention). He had this tendency to be controlling and demanding. If a guy pushed me to do things that I wouldn’t have wanted for myself to do on the very first day we met, well let’s say he would’ve gone out dateless. To tell the truth I really do have a bunch of issues with Ben and Fallon. To wrap up my feelings for them, let’s say I was really beyond annoyed. But I’m flashing a quick double thumbs up for Amber and Glenn. They were the cutest couple in this novel.
The plot twists. The plot twists were twisted – see what I just did there? – twisted in ways I perceived them almost as mockery. I wasn’t able to predict what was happening particularly with Ben. My prediction was way more realistic but maybe not worse (I’ll admit, I thought he was a druggie or a pusher who had been in and out of rehab). Given that I wasn’t able to predict some things about Ben, it doesn’t imply that I believe that the plot was very carefully planned and thought of. For some reason, I think it wasn’t. The coincidences in the novel were just so unbelievable.
Dragging read. I believe that dragging the whole story was really unnecessary. There were twists and turns here and there and they weren’t really that good because I felt they were absurd, may be illogical and just plain ridiculous to some point. I just felt like the five years could’ve been three. But I still enjoyed reading the novel anyways.
I believe a lot of readers can go past the issues I personally had with this book because Colleen Hoover’s storytelling makes up for what I think was lacking in the whole novel. I still recommend November 9 to readers, particularly to CoHo’s fans.