Monday, July 26, 2010

If You Live Like Me, by Lori Weber

After three years of traipsing around economically-depressed sections of Canada, Cheryl is fed up. She misses her home and friends in Montreal, but instead of heading home this year, her father is dragging them to Newfoundland! She can't imagine a more forlorn place on earth. It doesn't help that their purpose in going (so her father can write yet another chapter for his book on dying cultures) is downright embarrassing. Cheryl is determined to find a way back home, even if it means stowing away on a ship. But then she meets Jim (the literal boy next door) and leaving becomes more complicated.

Too much effort is expended in this book on two things: providing a breathless tour of the Rock and making sure we know how frustrated Cheryl is to be dragged out there. Of course, we all understand that she'll be seduced by its charms (with some help by the right boy) and Cheryl's protestations to the contrary are weak and fairly pointless. So, the first 150 or so pages drag on. Weber obviously loves Newfoundland but her praise of its scenery and beauty gets tiresome. The romance, while inevitable, is not all that interesting and the similarly predictable parental confrontation doesn't thrill either. In sum, the drama never builds and neither did my investment in the characters.

No comments: