The book is hundred pages too long. I don’t know it it’s because it took me over a month to actually finish it, but yeah, it drags. A chick-lit novel of ninety-four chapters is just too much take. Written mostly in narrative form, the Babyland is borderline boring.
Author: Holly Chamberlin
And To Think Pink Was Once My Favorite Color...
Then the two pink lines appeared. Pink, as in positive...as in pregnant...as in pure, unadulterated panic. This wasn’t supposed to happen: I’m scheduled to marry the handsome, successful, and very appropriate Ross Davis in six months. Unfortunately, while Ross may not rock my world with kitchen-table sex, his technique worked well enough to put a bun in my thirtysomething oven...
Don’t get me wrong, babies are great – in theory. But I enjoyed my life the way it was. Loved my job, my rooftop apartment, my friends; was having fun planning my wedding and gazing at my pretty three-carat diamond. I didn’t need anything more – did I? Well, whatever I needed, here’s what I currently have: a nasty case of morning sickness, a future mother-in-law obsessed with “Ross’s Baby”, and a custom-designed wedding dress I’ll soon be too fat to wear.
Now, as I burst the seams on my pencil skirts, I’m trying to take some small comfort in the fact that one is never too bloated for a really cute purse. But impending motherhood also has me reassessing more than my wardrobe – and wondering how fast I can finish growing up...
I have to admit, one reason why I bought Babyland was its cover. The bright yellow stood out among rows and rows of black and gray spines, and the bundle-carrying stork on the front added to the cutesy appeal of the book. After reading the teaser, I’d say I was kinda hooked.
I thought Babyland will tell the story of Anna, her engagement and eventually her wedding with Ross, her pregnancy and eventually the birth of their child, and the roles her girl friends play in the process.
Boy, was I wrong, or better yet, I was surprised with the twist of events. Babyland’s tag line is, Single life is just full of surprises, and indeed, it was. What it forgot to mention was, not all surprises are good.
Spoilers! (Highlight the text)
The engagement broke off, Anna miscarried, one of her girl friends turned her back on her, and Anna ended up with a totally different guy in the end.
End of spoilers.
I wasn’t able to relate much with Anna. She’s about twelve years my senior. She’s engaged AND pregnant, both of which I had no experience on. Unlike her, I have a good, healthy relationship with my parents and brothers, and I don’t live independently, although I envy her living in a rooftop apartment. And her job as an event-planner is a career I would want for myself in my alternate universe.:)
But Anna’s in loved, and that, I can say, I went through at one point. She has girl friends who serve as her sounding boards and support group. And like any woman, she’s constantly wondering about the marvels of love and loving. And the fact that we continue to grow up despite our age, we all can relate to that, am I right?=)
Just few more of Anna’s realizations that struck my fancy, and I believe are true, are:
“True, he doesn't make you cry. Question is, does he make you laugh?”
“Female curiosity. Women like to know the stories of their friends' lives. Women like to understand.”
“We're friends. Remember, we have the right to bore each other every now and then.”
“I'm in love with someone, & none of it will go away. The memories bombard me every day. The dreams haunt me every night.”
“When you're in love, you can handle almost anything as long as you can spend some time with your loved one.”
But then, I say that Babyland dragged because there are unnecessary subplots the book could have done without. In addition to that, there are also redundant situations and conversations. Two or three of each could have been enough to prove a point or to establish a scenario as a routine. Halfway through the book, I was itching to take a look at the last page and know what happens to Anna.
Though the title has “baby” in it, the book tackles more about Anna’s feelings towards her fiancé, and how her girl friends are helping her cope. Actually, I shouldn’t be surprised at all that Ross and Anna eventually broke up. The “very appropriate” and “may not rock my world” in the teaser should have given it away. And when Jack entered the picture, with Anna’s feelings for him more vividly described than that for Ross, the reader should know that a Ross-Anna breakup was inevitable.
Still, lessons can be learned from the story.
• Unexpected pregnancy may either make or break you as a couple. And an engagement, although it should, does not always promise a happily ever after. Anna learned that the hard way.
• Tell that someone you really love what and how you feel before it's too late. It has been said over and over again, it’s already a cliché, but true. As Anna’s friends advised, “Better to regret actions you have taken than to regret not having had the courage to take them in the first place.”
• And lastly, a girl can never survive a heart break without the help of her girl friends. ‘Nuff said. (a shout out goes out to my girl friends out there ü)
I have yet to read another Holly Chamberlin novel, but for Babyland, I give her 3.5 stars out of 5.
★★★☆☆ : NICE - Fun read. Not really bad, but it wasn't that good.