Landline by Rainbow Rowell: Time Travel for the Funny Girl

Second chances don’t come quite often, but for Georgie McCool, it came in a way that was typical for someone like her- it had to be so ridiculous it’s funny for some, but when you’re in her situation? You’d think you’re going ballistic.

Her marriage with aloof but sweet Neal was on the rocks- there was no denying that- and all she could blame was herself. Her career, and not to mention her co-worker Seth, was all she kept working on. The stupidity of it all only dawned on her when Neal and the kids left to Omaha without her. So she’s alone and it’s almost Christmas.

Santa must have come in early for her but the gift was unexpected- phone calls from her old telephone during college to Neal- old Neal.

What do you do when you possibly have a chance to change something from the past? Would you take the opportunity or keep it as it is?

This was by far the most mature novel Rainbow Rowell has written, in a way. Eleanor and Park were about preteens, Fangirl about college students, Attachments about late twenties and Carry On being, well, vampires and wizards and most of all fictional. It talks about adulthood, responsibilities, parenting, and family. Most importantly, it revolved around second chances, and whether or not we should take them.

The first time I read this book I was constantly crying. I felt like I wish my ex-boyfriend was like Neal and Georgie at the same time, focusing on certain qualities. We all have this idea about our dream or actual significant other. Granted they are not always as accurate as our ideals, and so the big question is this: when you have a chance to change something about them, will you take it?

I’d be a hypocrite if I said no. Relationships made me want to pull my hair out, bury myself underground, and rise only when the second coming happens. It’s tiring, it’s complicated, and it makes your hormones go wack. Landline said something otherwise, and this quote was what struck me the most:

“Neal didn’t take Georgie’s breath away. Maybe the opposite. But that was okay—that was really good, actually, to be near someone who filled your lungs with air.”
Excerpt From: Rowell, Rainbow. “Landline.” Orion, 2014-07-03T07:00:00+00:00. iBooks. 

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Romance doesn’t have to drive you mad, it can be as calm as the night. It doesn’t have to make you scream, it can be as quiet as the wind. It doesn’t have to make you feel pain, it can soothe you like it never ached. You don’t always have to feel the pain to know that it’s real. You simply decide, lay down your cards, and work your butt off to make it your happily ever after. It’s sometimes as natural as breathing. At least that’s what I learned, what I think, what I feel.

To be honest I always rooted for Georgie throughout the book. Like her, I was a funny girl. Just the funny girl in fact. I’ve had a crush on someone like Neal before, and I admired how things turned out between them because it sure as hell didn’t happen to me. My own version of Neal, a high school crush, was over before it began. But hey, if there’s hope for them then there’s hope for me. I’m not saying with the same guy, I’m not hung up over him, just relationships in general.

Being the funny girl sadly means you dodge the truth. One day, it’s going to bounce back at you, right in the face. You can’t just simply hide a bruise. I’ll leave you to find out what Georgie does.

So to answer my own question, yes I would change some things. But that doesn’t mean I regret them now.

We all hope for the best for married couples to stat together in novels. You’ll have to read and find out if it delivered.

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