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Thirty Something: Nothing's How We Dreamed…

Thirty Something: Nothing's How We Dreamed It Would Be

by Filipa Fonseca Silva

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Reviewed by Amy P.
Book provided by the author for review
Review originally posted at Romancing the Book

This is a good example of a book that you find yourself reading and enjoying despite not liking any of the characters.

First, there is Joana. Icy, remote, snobby, rigid. Bitchy. She throws a dinner party and gets pissy when people drink all of her wine or don’t appreciate the fine china she uses. She barely gives her husband any attention, and what little she doles out is grudgingly. Sure, he makes her shop discount, but she exacts her pound of flesh in return. Boy, does she. When she finally lashes out, though, you might find yourself even less enchanted with her than you already were. Joana, you see, thinks she deserves whatever she decides to take.

We also meet Felipe, who can best be described as a man whore. He appears to have a good job, but his relationship track record makes George Clooney envious. Poor Felipe, though. He did love at one time, but the object of his affection begged him not to love her. When it appeared that he did, she virtually vanished from his life. Ever since then, he’s made do with one woman after another, allowing them to warm his bed but not his heart.

And lastly, there is Maria. The one relationship she had featured a busted engagement when her fiance left her for a man. Yep. A man. Maria just wants a romantic connection, even if it means getting drunk and cozying up to Felipe. Sometimes you want to smack the mess right out of her. You’ll want to smack Joana and Felipe, too.

The three converge at Joana’s house for her dinner party, complete with Joana’s husband and a few other guests. The wine, beer and pot begin to flow, and of course Things Happen. Some of it you see coming, but there are a few pleasant surprises. This is a well written book in that you keep reading. You feel as if you know the characters and understand them (if not like them), and you become invested in them. Can Joana stop just for one second thinking that she is all kind of fabulous? Can Felipe stop his womanizing? And can Maria stop thinking that she needs a man to be happy?

After you turn thirty, you’re expected to grow up a little. You’re expected to have life somewhat figured out and to know where you want to be and who you want to be. The characters in this book don’t appear to have that quite yet, but the good news is, there might be some hope.
added by RtB | editRomancing the Book, Amy P. (Jan 29, 2013)
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My earliest memory is of a Christmas tree.
Maria: It was my fault. I’m sorry. I’m sorry I loved you too much. I’m sorry I didn’t see the signs. I’m sorry for demanding more than I knew you could give me. I don’t bear you any grudges. I just miss you.
Joana: Besides, I’m not the type to have lovers. It’s bad enough putting up with one man, let alone two or three. I find sex so tiring... Not that I’m frigid, but no way is sex my favourite activity. Dress up, dress off, now change position. So much work just for him to fall asleep immediately afterwards. There are far more pleasant things to do undressed. A shiatsu massage, for instance. At the Ritz.
Filipe: How could I tell her it was just sex? It’s drastic enough telling a woman you don’t like her hairdo or the clothes she’s wearing, let alone telling her you don’t want a relationship with her. The disappointment, the hateful looks, and worst of all, the tears. Tears are more than I can handle.
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