Emma Bailey is fed up with the dating scene, and if she hears her mother nag one more time about getting married...well, she's had it, and she wants everyone to know it. In a moment of clarity (or insanity?), she announces to the world that she will never marry. No husband and no kids; no worries about diapers, driving lessons, or divorce. Her friends are there for her, but they're also involved in their own lives and loves, so off she goes into a world of casual dating. But what happens when the avowed spinster, the woman who has supposedly tucked her heart into a safe little space, suddenly realizes that her best friend Brian means more to her?
Jamie Lynn Braziel's Declaring Spinsterhood delivers with this enjoyable romp through dating, friendship, and passion.
©2011 Jamie Lynn Braziel (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
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"Juvenile and poorly written"
The main character (Emma) acted like an overly dramatic, eye rolling, ice cream eating pre-teen.
All of the scenes in which the main character interacted with her mother. They made her (Emma) seem petty and juvenile.
Oh, and all of Emma's scene's with her best friend and love interest (forgot his name). They were superficial and cringe worthy.
I know it seems harsh, but I would really advice others against spending their credit on this book. It's really not worth it.
"What century is this?"
I didn't read other reviews before buying this book, I judged it by its cute cover. I did finish the book, but just barely. The reader is fine, it's the story that bothered me. The main character is unrealistically chaste under the guise of being a Christian preacher's daughter while at the same time being an incredibly manipulative sexual tease. Her family is unforgivingly rude and unaccepting. Some of the dialogue is, I think, meant to be funny, but I just found myself feeling offended and disbelieving that this story is supposed to take place in modern-day Texas.
The story is very formulaic and has little depth. It reminded me of a 1980’s teen angst movie. While I realized at first look that this book was going to be a light easy read I did want a little invention within the storyline. Most of these books all end the same way – girl get guy, I only wished the journey had not felt so forced and convenient. The writing is passable but had no real flare or distinctive style. I was bored most of the time and only continued to read in hopes that it would get better. I can't recommend this book if you have another choice.
"Classic and cute"
I like the audio version, because then i can clean and do other things. But if i want to relax whit a cup of tea, it will be the printet version.
Emma. The way she handle her mother and her ex Steve. The way she takes control on her one life. And her confusing feelings about Brian.
I just love her. She make all the characters difference and unique.
Declaring Spinsterhood is a good tag line.
it's a cute story. I love it and i will absolutely tell others about this book.
"What is it the 1950's??"
The book was average. Not bad - not fantastic. I won't be re-listening to it like I do with other books.
Seriously? Live in the 2014 instead of 1950s.
Not yet but she was excellent.
This book had a fine story line. This was ridiculously dated. Women now days don't have to wait for marriage to have sex, or get permission to have men sleep over. Every time something remotely "riske" happened (and Shakespeare was more bawdy than this book) the women all shrieked and went church. It was irritating. Guess what. Women now days don't need permission to have sex, it is completely okay to actually have sex for fun, AND shockingly - it is perfectly normal not not have to get married if they actually do have sex. UGH. Made me grind my teeth.
Instead of showing how women rebel against being pushed into marriage and motherhood (like many women feel now days) she emphasized the fact. Woman cannot be whole without a man.
Seriously? Like joke says "If my vibrator could mow the lawn I wouldn't get married"
Emma had a bookstore, was taking charge of her life - only to be miserable without a man. (insert cringe - teeth grind here)
Chicka, grow some balls, tell your family to f-off, and buy some toys.
"Terribly Unlikeable Characters"
Johanna Parker is a fantastic narrator and has narrated several exceptional books. She must not have read this book before narrating it. No one could read this twice.
The plot hinges on a declaration of spinsterhood by the main character. Thus the title. And she does "declare" it at lunch one Sunday. Then the book continues on exactly as before. Besides providing a few lines of dialog, the book totally ignores what was supposed to be the primary hook of the plot line.
The mother is emotionally abusive to the daughter. The father is one of those characters we are supposed to see as an upstanding moral Christian. Instead he is a mysogonist who thinks if his daughter would only carry a gun and find a man to guide her, no matter how big a tool the guy is, she would be worthy of his love. No one could be raised by these parents and emerge undamaged. And while the daughter gets angry at them, we are still suppose to believe they are good people worthy of the daughter's love. After all they are Christian, go to church every Sunday and the dad is a preacher. That must mean they are "good." Two words. Jim Jones.
On a blind date her loving mother made for her, her drunk date makes a sloppy attempt to grope and kiss her in a public place. Even though her dad was also a cop, she is totally helpless against the drunk groper. Her family response? Not -- take a self defense class. No. It is get a conceal and carry license so the next time your mother sets you up on a date with a drunk lech, you can blow his head off. This alone makes this book a great argument for gun control.
I could not finish the book. There could be no acceptable happy ending. And I was pretty sure the only satisfying ending, her parents getting killed in a violent shoot out, wasn't in the cards.
Having her family be remotely likable would have been nice. Even her minister father, who while not as consistently obnoxious and petty as his wife, is just as insensitive and callous as the rest. Emma constantly describes her family as a good and upstanding, church-going family, but their treatment and behavior of Emma does not exemplify unconditional or Christian love. For example, her mother BANS her from the house for not wanting to date anymore; SERIOUSLY, that's being a good person/mother? There is no time in this seemingly endless book that her mother takes care of her. She seems to pull out the "I love you" card simply to justify her bullying. Another example is when after she is badly hurt, her uncle can't keep from putting her down about her manlessness, commenting that she'll have an even harder time catching a man looking like she does. I mean, WTF? I don't know if the author made the family so horrible to try to make Emma's struggle to be a stronger person look better, but it just made every scene her family was in SO trying. She professes how great her family is, but even her brother, who she says she's close to doesn't stand up for her and whenever Emma tries to stand up for herself she gets's slapped down for "bad manners" or "sassiness", while her family is borderline emotionally abusive. To me, you stop being able to use the excuse that "you just want someone to be happy and not alone" when you are willing to overlook someone trying to overpower/sexually assault her after their date or suggest that criminals in the local jail should get offered a reduction in their sentences if they donate sperm.
Not the entire genre, but definitely storylines that center around "well-meaning" family harping on catching a man.
Yes. Johanna Parker was good. It was the only thing that kept me going. I hate to not finish a book, but I would have quit this one 20% in without the narration.
The book had potential and the main characters were sweet and likable, but the family dynamic was just way too much to get past.
"It's cheap but I'd still avoid wasting the time"
I was beyond disappointed. The premise sounded great and reading the opening pages in the kindle preview and listening to the audio preview convinced me that it was a story I would enjoy. After listening a while I thought that the writer was either 16 or 83 (although that's a slap at 83 year olds, both my parents are considerably older than that and still not as rigid as this) because I couldn't believe the way the characters behaved. I don't say that a woman has to go to bed with a man because he bought her dinner, but this is the other extreme. We start out with a 30 year old woman who exclusively dated a guy for two years and after the breakup, which occurs before the beginning of the book, she's congratulating herself on never having an intimate relationship with him. I'm sorry, but by 30 you should know yourself well enough that it doesn't take two years, and him cheating on you, to decide that you should get married, get intimate or get gone. If he doesn't turn you on enough to choose one of the first two options, you should be looking for someone who does.
The way the characters relate to one another is pure high school. The situations they set up really show the emotional maturity of teenagers. Additionally the mother is always carping on her to get married. The uncle is a truly gross character, telling her at Thanksgiving that they're going to have to use a turkey baster to get grandkids from her and instead of backing her up her dad, the minister, says his cop friends may have to give reduced time to some of the felons to get them to "make a contribution"? Why didn't she walk out if she couldn't get any more respect from her family than that? Only her sister-in-law and to a lesser degree her brother think that it's ok for her to choose her own destiny, everyone else is telling her what to do. An example of unhealthy family dynamics:
Her mother wants her to catch the bouquet at her sister's wedding. "Why don't you go catch it for me, Mother, since you're so concerned about it?"
"Don't sass your mother, Emma," Dad chimed in while wagging his finger. "You're not so old that I can't put you over my knee."
Excuse me, at 30, yes, she is too old, and has been for some time. So Emma "managed to jump and grab it while avoiding the stampede at the same time." Does she need her mother's approval that much?
I wouldn't have finished it if I hadn't gotten the audio book. I had a project I was working on, I needed something to occupy my mind while I finished it and I didn't want to re-listen to anything I already had so I bought this. The narrator was great. At first I thought that she was reading too fast but it became clear that the sooner she got us to the happy ending the better for everyone. I'm not sorry I finished it. I almost never leave a book in the middle because few characters are so unappealing that I don't want to find out how the story ends. This was almost one of them, again, if it wasn't for the audio I probably would have skipped to the last chapter and missed the one or two scenes that I enjoyed.
I should send this to my daughter. Whenever she reads about parents like this I get phone calls telling me what a wonderful mother she thinks I've been. It's great for my ego. Even so, I can't do that to her, she'll have to find models of horrible parents somewhere else. (PS the best friends parents are really nice but still a little strange in the ways they're willing to manipulate the two "kids"...)
"BAD BAD BAD"
I see no reason why this book needs to be read by anyone. Spare yourself the agony now. Frankly I feel a bit duped by Audible for even offering such malarkey and/or forcing a one star review!!
Johanna Parker is a fantastic narrator.
She's the best narrator of all of the books I've listened to on audible. After listening to the Sookie Stackhouse series, I thought this was a good next choice.
The end. Gag me.
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