The Reluctant Blogger
Dr. Schenk, I don’t know if what I’ve written amounts to a breakthrough or not, but I hope you know how difficult this was for me. I also hope this proves how serious I am.
Todd knows he is in a bad place. That’s why he went to a therapist in the first place, and that alone took a lot of doing. So when Dr. Schenk threatens to stop their sessions unless Todd puts in more effort, he grasps at the last available straw: a personal blog that will force Todd to confront his demons.
Ever since he lost his wife, Todd has not been the same. He’s been forced to Single Adult activities at church, and everyone seems to expect him to just forget Marci and get married again—especially when he meets Emily, who makes him smile and starts to bring him out of his depression. But dating again is hard when Todd has three kids of his own, not to mention an overbearing father and friends with their own problems.
This beautifully woven and emotional tale is both heartbreaking and humorous. Championing friendship, love, and family, Ryan Rapier deals adeptly with the everyday struggles we face as well as the strongest ties that keep us together. You’re sure to fall in love with this magnificent tale of redemption, forgiveness, and new beginnings.
Ok, I hope that it’s pretty clear why I picked up this book. As a blogger I thought it was nice to read a book about blogging and I didn’t really check out the synopsis for this one. But I didn’t think that would really matter. Then I started reading this and the story was a lot different than I imagined it would be, but it was still good. Then all of a sudden there was a flood of Mormon stuff ( apparently Mormons and LDS (=Latter Day Saint) mean the same thing). And can I just say that this is not my scene, at all. I mean this in a very respectful way, it’s just that I don’t know anything at all about the beliefs, rituals and activities. And as I have mentioned in a previous book review (H2O, the novel ), which was also a book doused in religion, is that I am not religious. I don’t have any problem with people who are, I’m just not one of them. But that’s something you need to know about me when you continue reading this review.
I really liked the main storyline in this book, it was very deep and dealt with some big issues in a very good way. But as mentioned above, the whole of this book was doused in LDS stuff. It was from people talking about missions to having scenes in the temple and watching certain broadcasts on TV. I don’t have a problem with these things being in the book, because they weren’t the main focus of the story. But this was something that made it hard for me to connect with the book and the characters because I know nothing at all about these things. So for me this was a struggle at times. But the great thing was that this religious setting was great for the storyline. Because certain characters in the story appeared to be behaving in a way that is not appropriate for people of the LDS faith. And this made Todd question a lot about his faith and his friends. This was just really interesting to read about because I don’t have any experience with these things. So for me this really was a new world opening for me.
The characters in this book were very good. I really liked how they were all very complex and not always perfect. It felt very true to life which is definitely a plus. But I have to say that I didn’t really connect with Todd, especially because of his short temper. I admit that I was also a bit bothered by his initial reaction to some situations but I liked how he handled them in the end. The thing I liked best about the characters were there relations to each other. They weren’t always simple but they felt very true for it.
One of the reasons I gave this book only three stars was the writing style. It’s written in blog posts but I’m not a fan. I don’t know what is exactly that made me opposed to the writing but I just had this slightly uncomfortable feeling throughout reading this book. Perhaps it’s because it’s actually more of a diary than an actual blog that made me like it less. Because let’s be clear about this: I love reading blogs. So this was actually a very big let-down for me. It didn’t really feel like a blog, because it was a private writing exercise for Dr. Schenk I imagine.
In general I really liked this book okay. I had a tough time getting into the story because of the religious setting which I knew nothing about. Add to that the writing style that didn’t really suit me and you have the reason behind the three stars. I did however really enjoy the storyline and all these doubts surrounding the religion.