Friday, 22 April 2011

Review: Not Meeting Mr Right by Anita Heiss

This book took waaaaaay too long to read.

It was second in my Aussie Author Month endeavours, and I started in on Thursday, April 7. Like I said, waaaay too long. An easy, light chick-lit read, I thought I'd be finished by the following Sunday and could launch into the rest of my Aussie author list with gusto. But here I am, two weeks later and nearly at the end of Aussie Author month (at least for me - I'm leaving the country on Monday and will be away from the blog), and I've only just finished book two. I'm a bit disappointed, but these things happen. For one, I've been ridonkulously busy in the leadup to my holiday. For another, I kinda struggled with this book.

It was an easy read, don't get me wrong - and quite well-written. Unfortunately, I just couldn't stand the main character. I tried, oh, I tried REALLY hard - she's a history buff, dammit, I should be able to relate! - but she just annoyed me more than anything. See, Alice is a Sydney-sider in her late 20s who loves the single life... until she goes to her high school reunion and is disgusted by all the married women who can't talk about anything but their husbands and babies. So disgusted is she, that she promptly decides she wants to be one of them. Oh, but she'll be better at it than them, of course, and she'll even manage it by her 30th birthday - two years away. What ensues is a looooooooong string of bad blind dates, failed singles events, relationship drama, flirtations with the classifieds and internet dating, attractions to the wrong guys and rudeness to the nice ones.

I think that was my main problem with Alice - to me, she came across as quite rude and judgemental. Sure, it was funny a few times, but it just got very, very grating after awhile. Even at the beginning, she's uber-judgemental of her former classmates; first, she ridicules stay-at-home mums for having no careers, then turns her nose up at a working mum for "abandoning" her kids. And after spending the evening looking down on everyone, she decides she wants what they have?! It's probably not a good thing when the whole premise on which a story is built annoys you. I wanted to like this book, but I guess, like the gazillion men Alice meets, it just wasn't the right one for me.

Rating: 2.5/5

Talking Points
  • I don't tend to read many Aussie books (certainly not enough), so it was a novelty to read something that was set in my hometown. I could not only picture the general city easily, but also specific bars, beaches, streets and everything! That was kinda cool.
  • It was good to see a heroine who was a strong, powerful, successful Indigenous woman. It's just a shame she was so unlikeable.
  • There's a sequel to this book called Avoiding Mr Right, apparently told from the perspective of Alice's friend Peta. I'm kinda curious to read it - I liked Peta as a character. Especially because she seemed to get just as annoyed at Alice sometimes.
Fine Print
Genre: Chick lit
Publisher: Bantam
Published: 2007
Get It: Fishpond

This post is part of Aussie Author Month, which supports the Indigenous Literacy Project.


  1. Deborah Mailman would be perfect as Alice - good call on that! Thanks for sharing your review

    Shelleyrae @ Book'd Out

  2. Oh thanks! Have you read the book? :)