Tuesday, June 11, 2013
REVIEW: The Night I Got Lucky by Laura Caldwell
Author: Laura Caldwell
Publisher: Red Dress Ink
Publication Date: September, 2005
Description: When Billy Rendell suddenly gets everything she wants, it turns out to be the last thing she needs . . . A long-awaited promotion. Freedom from emotional baggage. A newly -- ahem -- amorous husband. What's wrong with this picture? Well . . . everything. For starters, Billy hasn't actually earned any of it. Instead, like some character in a fairy tale, this stuck-in-a-rut publicist had all her wishes granted overnight -- which feels great, at least at first. But soon Billy's brand-new success starts to unravel -- who'd have thought becoming a VP would be so Very Painful? Or that a harmless crush on a co-worker would turn not-so-harmless now that he's crushing back? It'll take a surreal, rollicking, high-stakes journey for Billy to realize what she really wants out of life . . . before it's too late.
My Thoughts: This was one of the books that have been languishing on my to be read pile, gathering dust for years. I am still despondent that the Red Dress Ink line was discontinued. Nothing brought a smile to my face like opening my mailbox to find my monthly arrivals waiting for me. If I weren’t already a fan of Laura Caldwell’s books, The Night I Got Lucky would have made me one.
Billy Rendell is a character anyone can relate to and I found myself empathizing with her immensely. Everything from the angst of having an unusual name, to abandonment issues, unsatisfying marriage and career struggles, Billy is carrying a lot of emotional baggage. We’ve all been there and we all have wished for things to be different or to get what we want. It’s the human condition. What I really liked about this story is that Billy learns that getting what she wants may not be the best thing.
After yet another visit to her therapist where she again whines about the state of her life, her therapist gives her a small jade frog and tells her that her luck will change. Billy goes home, slightly offended and disbelieving, puts the frog on her nightstand and goes to bed. The next morning, everything, and I mean everything has changed! Billy now has everything she thought she wants. The promotion, the attentive and loving husband, the sexy coworker now attracted to her, no longer missing her father who walked out on Billy and her mother and sisters, just to name a few. This is where things get really interesting and Billy quickly learns that everything comes with a price and for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.
As Billy tries to cope with the massive changes in her life, I got the impression she was drowning. Nothing was working out quite the way she had pictured. Billy decides that destroying the frog will put everything right. I got such a kick out of all the ways Billy tried to destroy the frog, even dropping it off the top of the Sears Tower. But every morning when Billy awoke, there was the frog back on her nightstand smiling at her. I got such a good sense of the desperation Billy was feeling by this time, and though her situation is no laughing matter, I couldn’t help but be amused at her reaction every morning.
Billy finally realizes luck and wishing away her problems are not a solution and she has to actually take action, participate in her life, and bring about the change she wants to see. I thoroughly enjoyed the results.
My Final Verdict: Overall, this was a very good book that I could not put down and I recommend it to all fans of the chick-lit and romance genre. This book was highly entertaining and the author does an excellent job of creating characters the reader will have feelings for and be drawn to. The secondary characters were intriguing and interesting too, without taking the reader’s focus from the central storyline. If you aren’t a fan of chick-lit, consider giving Laura Caldwell’s mysteries a try. I definitely will be.
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