I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
This post contains affiliate links you can use to purchase the book. If you buy the book using that link, I will receive a small commission from the sale.Not Working by Lisa Owens
Published by The Dial Press on May 3, 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Humorous, Women's Fiction
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A laugh-out-loud, irreverent debut novel that forces you to imagine what might happen if you quit your job to find your true purpose.
First there was Helen Fielding's Bridget Jones, then Allison Pearson's I Don't Know How She Does It and now Lisa Owens' Not Working, capturing the point of view of a young generation trying not to have it all, but to figure out what it all means. Twenty-something Londoner Claire has just resigned from her job without a plan--and although she is pleased, her family and friends can't seem to understand. Before too long, she manages to push away both her safe, steady, brain-surgeon boyfriend and her difficult but loving mother. Quirky, questioning Claire hilariously navigates and comments on the emotions and minutiae of day-to-day life as only someone without the distractions of a regular routine can. This is a story of self-discovery, packed with wry humour and told in sparkling vignettes.
Not Working is Lisa Owens’ debut, and it is mostly successful. Styled as a rom-com where the main character, Claire, quits her job abruptly as she just doesn’t like it and relies on her medical student boyfriend for support. Then she seeks her next big step amongst “charming” foibles and many starts and stops.
The plot of Not Working was nothing really new but was different enough that I continued reading. The wrap-up was expected in this type of read and did not disappoint. Lisa Owens’ writing was good, but lacked a certain finesse that I hope is just due to her inexperience. I enjoyed the pacing as the story was told in small bursts, with some portions just a few sentences. I found it a unique way to tell a story. The world built was a bit lacking due to the vignette style. The emotions and characters were there, ish. I did feel with Claire but was also frustrated with her as she put her needs first and expected everyone else to feel sorry for her that she quit her job. The boyfriend was also frustrating as he put up with a ton of crap.
Not Working did actually work on a lot of levels. The story was cute, fast read that resolved itself well. It was just a bit too scattered to fully be amazing and the main character was a bit to self-centered for me to truly love. I do think Lisa Owens has potential for something big and for a debut, Not Working was well done. I will watch out for Owens and hope her sophomore try is a bit more fine tuned.
Favorite lines – It’s the little things you miss: free pens, notebooks, coffee, the color printer. The incidental conversation.
Biggest cliché – But I don’t wanna adult!
Have you read Not Working, or added it to your TBR?
Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
- 2016 New Release Challenge
- Netgalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge
- The Goodreads Challenge