Sunday, December 8, 2013
Nineties Nostalgia: Attachments
I was only 12 years old when the world was obsessed with Y2K and what would happen when we rolled over from 1999 to 2000. Social media didn't really exist. Email was barely a thing. Cell phones were starting to become common, but for talking, not texting. It was in many ways a simpler time, and in her debut novel Attachments, Rainbow Rowell made me nostalgic for it in this cute office romance.
Lincoln doesn't really have much of a life. He's in his mid/late 20s, still lives with his mom, and works nights at a company doing IT. But really, his primary task at work is email surveillance, making sure employees are using their work-issued email accounts appropriately. He's supposed to send warnings, and he usually does, except for Beth and Jennifer. He can't help but get wrapped up in their conversations back and forth, their hilarious tales, their highs and lows of their personal lives. He should stop, but once he realizes he's fallen for Beth, how can he? And how could he ever introduce himself to her now?
Rowell took the YA world by storm this year with Eleanor & Park and Fangirl, but after reading so much dystopian YA, I wanted something different, but still wanted a taste of this author everyone's been talking about. Attachments was a perfect choice. Lincoln is a good guy who has found himself in a terribly awkward situation (with really no one to blame but himself), and I found myself rooting for him and cringing at the same time. Meanwhile, Beth and Jennifer's friendship is unlikely and flawed and so natural. I was as invested in their conversations as Lincoln was.
All in all, Attachments is an adult novel with definite young adult appeal that was a cute look at a time not so far past. "Adorable" is a word that comes to mind, secondary characters back up a great and quirky leading cast, and in a time where technology is so prevalent, it was refreshing to step back and see how people are still people behind the screens. If you're looking for a fast and fun story, this is the one for you. I'm even more excited to read Rowell's other works now.
Comments welcome, and, as always, happy reading!
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