Love, Rosie by Cecelia Ahern
Release Date: 2004
“Life is funny isn’t it? Just when you think you’ve got it all figured out, just when you finally begin to plan something, get excited about something, and feel like you know what direction you’re heading in, the paths change, the signs change, the wind blows the other way, north is suddenly south, and east is west, and you’re lost. It is so easy to lose your way, to lose direction.”
Life is an uncertain beast. One minute we are planning our futures according to our preferences, and the next we are strolling down a road that we had never imagined, making decisions we had never previously thought we’d be faced with. Uncertainty keeps us awake at night and fills our bodies with anxiety at the thought of what could have been or what if. Unfortunately for those of us who dread uncertainty, there is no road map for life. We can plan and plan to our hearts content, but sometimes those plans are never meant to be, or more simply, meant to happen on their own terms and not your own.
Rosie Dunne and Alex Stewart have been friends since childhood. Living in Dublin, both had big plans from a young age. Rosie dreamed of owning/managing a grand hotel while Alex dreamed of becoming a doctor. Together they built a friendship that could handle most any situation, that is until Alex and his family uproot from the quaint Dublin to busy Boston—which is practically on the other side of the world in terms of their friendship. While Alex is away, Rosie must cope with his departure and finish the last bit of her schooling without him. Her partner in crime having completely disappeared from her life save for letters and emails.
On the one night when Rosie needed him most, Alex was unable to return to Dublin, resulting in Rosie making a decision that would in turn affect the rest of her life. Continuing their relationship through emails and letters that chronical their lives, Rosie and Alex learn to live apart from one another. Each harboring certain feelings for the other and for each other’s significant others. While everyone around them can see what fate is trying to pull, Rosie and Alex remain blind to it. We have the power to change our destiny, but sometimes fate is just too strong to break.
Love, Rosie is a true gem. The story is told through letters, emails, and IM’s from Rosie, Alex, and their family and friends. Each letter is a hint to their lives and the times between them. It spans over years of their lives and as a reader you grow with them. I think that was the aspect that I loved most about the book. I felt like I grew up with them, that I lived an entire lifetime through them. Their relationship was maddening because at every turn they shied away from their connection and sometimes it was just downright frustrating. Every excuse for not being together drove me mad because they both denied it for years and years (which equated to pages and pages of their relationship getting warmer and then turning completely cold). The only complaint I had was that there were times where I really missed traditional narrative so I could see what happened between them during visits. I really wanted to see how they interacted with one another in person versus letters and email. With that being said, I loved this book. I’ve actually been in book mourning, unable to move on to a new book for fear of it not being as good as this one. I think all of the characters were great and they each had a great personality that I could tell the change during letters and emails easily. I particularly enjoyed this book because it has to do a lot with uncertainty in life, which is something I know all too well at this point in time. Rosie really spoke to me because she was a young woman who was trying to figure out her life, and I connected strongly with that. This is one that will definitely stay with me for a bit.