Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Mercury in Retrograde

Mercury in Retrograde: A Novel
Paula Froelich
ISBN: 978-1-4165-9894-7
Washington Square Press
To purchase click the image to the left

“When Mercury spins between the Earth and the Sun, a condition that astrologers call Mercury in Retrograde, it appears to the untrained eye that it is hurtling backward” although it is not, of course. The phenomenon is actually a shift in the viewers’ perspective and it is during this time period that even the “lowliest of fortune tellers will inform you, Mercury in retrograde means one thing, if something can go wrong it will.” And it does…..

Meet the women of Mercury in Retrograde:

Penelope – A reporter who is up for promotion only to be strung along and passed over while slaving away at the worst job ever! Enraged, Penelope promptly quits, forgetting she does not have another job lined up, while simultaneously puking all over her boss! To make matters worse she accidentally sets fire to her now former workplace. Mercury in Retrograde has hit hard.

Lena- Also known as “Lipstick” is a NYC socialite whose parents suddenly decide to cut her off expecting that she will come home instead of making it on her own. Lena chooses to make it on her own and is thrown full force into a life she has never lived with a low paying job and the lack of endless money. It appears Mercury in Retrograde strikes again.

Dana- A top lawyer who is recently divorced after her husband of two years is caught cheating on her. Now his new wife is pregnant with the baby she was trying to have and Dana is devastated. She desperately needs to start living her life again and move on. Mercury throws Lena and Penelope her way. Is Mercury in Retrograde really all that bad?

When Mercury in Retrograde throws all it has at these three women, fate finds them all living in the same SoHo apartment building. The three women form a friendship and deal with their hardships together, finding a way to rise above and come out happier on the other side. Each woman is totally prepared to hide the next time mercury strikes again!

This novel was a letdown for me. I was really excited at the possibility of finding a new must read chick-lit author. This book didn’t accomplish that for me. The novel was difficult to get into making the first twenty to thirty pages hard to read. Once I was settled in the book I found myself quickly reading through parts only to hit a wall and find another slow, rambling passage. I generally like when an author transitions between characters, telling the story of each a little at a time, but for this book the transitions weren’t smooth and defined. I was confused at some points because I wasn’t aware the author was switching to a new character. I felt I had to stop and re-adjust to fully take in the new storyline.

Each character was very different yet alike from the others in this novel leaving the author with great potential to expand and bring them together. However, the book felt rushed. I did not feel a connection with the characters; instead I felt more that they were acquaintances I was able to know slightly and more on a superficial and needless informational level. The novel had great sections that captured my attention, but overall felt average. It was an okay read for me but not spectacular. I wasn’t captured from the start and each time my attention was fully engrossed, a slow and needless boring section would hit. I enjoyed the good sections and moved through the rough. The book is being referred to as a “romp” by many, which I would mostly agree with. I was looking for something deeper; the writing style was not my cup of tea. If you like chick-lit novels, women’s fiction, or a quick skim of the surface read this book would be worth the try, I just wouldn’t suggest paying full price.

Reviewed for Bookpleasures


  1. Hi!

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  2. Hi!I've got an award for you here http://bookstobrightenyourmood.blogspot.com/2010/10/life-is-good-award.html

  3. So when I saw this title, I remembered that I had read it, but for the life of me, I can't remember what I thought of it!


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