Book Review: Goodnight Tweetheart

Long time, no review*—and this is going to be a quickie, since I spent the morning terrifying my Sunday School class (’cause it’s Holy Week, which is pretty grim stuff until Easter) and the afternoon at Jane’s piano recital.

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Teresa Medeiros made me cry.

I picked up Goodnight Tweetheart from the New Books section on my way to lunch yesterday and experienced a major internal struggle before putting it down to go back to work.

This book begins with my third worst nightmare:  An unattended book signing.  But that’s not what made me tear up.

Abigail Donovan wrote a bestselling, Oprah-endorsed, great American novel . . . a while ago.  For her encore, she’s developed a terrific case of paralysis.  Her publisher has given her more extensions than Milli Vanilli, but Chapter Six is nothing more than wishful thinking.  Abby’s well is dry and her confidence is kaput.

And then her publicist registers her for Twitter.

Abby is skeptical, but tries it—and attracts her first follower, one Mark Baynard, who asks, “R U a virgin?”  Instead of closing her laptop, she finds herself typing back, “That depends.  Are you auditioning for TO CATCH A PREDATOR?”

This is the start of a snappy, snarky, prickly, warm and heartfelt friendship—and maybe more, if Mark Bayler is telling the whole truth . . .

Written almost entirely in tweets—the 21st century’s version of the epistolary novel—this story is a quick, hilarious read that is almost impossible to not share with anyone in the reader’s immediate area (or this reader, anyway).  Ms. Medeiros has great facility with dialogue; she manages to convey the thoughts and feelings of two faceless semi-strangers in 140-character chunks, for chapters at a time—with nary an emoticon in sight.  That takes skill.

There’s real depth here, too—beyond the wisecracks, tv trivia, and flirtation is a story about two lonely people who have some serious, realistic problems and may have to modify their ideas about happily ever after.

And the last chapter . . . just beautiful.

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*Except for a brief one I posted on Amazon for Averil Dean’s  The Key.   I’m planning on a  much longer one, but not until I read The Sand— these two books are so closely connected that I need to see how the latter ends first.  But don’t let that stop you from reading The Key in the meantime!