Have you ever started reading a book and knew immediately that you weren’t going to like it? That was my experience with The Importance of Being Alice. The premise of the book was that Alice, upon being dumped by her douchebag sort of fiance, decides to go on the vacation the two had planned and winds up sharing a shabby cabin with said douchebag’s friend. (Since the plot could be summed up in one sentence, I felt no need to include the entire thing.)
Part of my problem with the book stems from the fact that the ARC I received was almost unreadable–I’ve seriously seen pirated e-books that have better formatting. Even with this, I would have been able to continue reading if a single one of the characters was at all likable, which unfortunately was not the case. Elliot was alright, but he’s the type of curmudgeonly character that I want to take to the back and shoot. Compared to the rest of his family, however, Elliot was a boon. His mother would fit in with the Real Housewives women and his younger brother was a total teenage stereotype. Then, there are the characters we don’t meet, but are told about: one of his sisters ran off with the wife of the local minister and his other sister is involved with Alice’s ex. Nice people, he’s surrounded by there.
My biggest problem is that both Alice and Elliot are too stupid to live. You’re probably wondering how I know this, stopping so early in the story, but there are times when you can just tell. Case in point, they both decided to get on the decrepit boat on which they’d booked passage. I don’t care how expensive the tickets were, but if the Titanic post-sinking is in better condition then the vessel I am supposed to be getting on, I would run in the opposite direction.