Rickie is a young, single mom to six-year-old Noah. Noah is shy and extremely self-conscious. He's constantly picked on by his classmates for being "different" (he has food allergies) and tends to stay to himself. Rickie tries hard to be a good mother to him, but often appears to be distracted. She's aware of Noah's lack of friends (she really doesn't have any either) and the teasing he endures at school. So when Noah comes home and spins his side of the story about what went down in gym class, Rickie immediately heads straight to the school.
She is fuming mad when she meets Noah's gym coach. Andrew is young and cute (okay, very cute!) and attempts to calm Rickie before explaining that Noah exaggerated the story. And the scene is set for If You Lived Here, You'd Be Home Now.
It's quite obvious how the story will end for Rickie and Andrew. LaZebnik takes her time getting them there. After all, Andrew is currently with the gorgeous Gracie and Rickie has a "friends with benefits" relationship with her brother-in-law. But over the course of time, Rickie and Andrew get to know each other and well... you know the rest.
Let me pause here and say, it's really difficult for me to review this book. And here's why: Rickie. Initially, I liked her. She was a different female, lead character to me. She didn't care about her looks, her attitude was, "I'll do what I want, say what I want, etc." But quickly, I realized what I thought I'd like about her, started to get on my nerves and I couldn't take her anymore.
She's 25 years old, living at home, unemployed and her parents are paying for their grandson's private school tuition. Let's stop right there. Seems to me, she should be grateful. Instead she came across as entitled. Her mother, being her mother, wants her to grow up and take more responsibility for her life. Rickie becomes annoyed with her and says she is working on her college degree (she dropped out to have Noah), but is only taking one class.
And then there's Noah. She knows Noah has food restrictions. But yet she forgets... on several occasions. How does one forget this? I just wanted to shake her. In all fairness, I guess I couldn't relate to her. When I was twenty-five, I moved to a state where I knew no one to begin graduate school. I was on my own for the first time. And it was exciting, but yet terrifying.
What made the book for me was Rickie's half-sister Melanie. I just adored her. Her husband left the family for another woman and Melanie temporarily moved home to cope. At times, Melanie did not always say the right things and allowed her emotions to get the best of her. But you know what? She was real. She was honest and she was mature. She was someone I could connect with. How I wished this was her story and Rickie was a secondary character.
By the end, my feelings for Rickie shifted...a bit. She started to grow up and realized life is not just about the "happenings in her world". Although I didn't love this one, I think other readers may disagree with me.
Release date: September 27, 2010
Genre: Chick Lit
Source: Crazy Book Tours
I received a copy of If You Lived Here, You'd Be Home Now from Crazy Book Tours. Receiving this free copy did not influence my review in any way.