Wednesday, September 5, 2012

One Day (David Nicholls)

I’ve been going through a phase where I’m reading books that other people have raved about…what some would call “modern-day classics.”  I usually focus on newer books on 1776books, but there are some novels on the aforementioned lists that I haven’t read yet.  A few months ago, I picked up Kazuo Ishiguro's Never Let Me Go which I really disliked.  I saw David Nicholls’s One Day on the shelf at my local library and decided to give that one a go as well.  The numerous blurbs from prominent authors and publications made it seem like the second coming of The Great Gatsby.  So many people I talked with loved it and said Anne Hathaway’s movie ruined it.  Well, having neither read the novel nor seen the movie, I was looking at it with a clean slate.  And the one thing I took with me from reading One Day night after night…make my own darn decisions about the books I read.

One Day has a very interesting premise, following two people on the same day year after year beginning after their college graduation.  Dex and Emma, the reader is led to believe, are soulmates but do not know it.  No matter whom else they each happen to be with, Nicholls strongly makes the case that they belong together.  Each chapter describes the same day (July 15) every year, and the reader is responsible for filling in the other 364 days between.  This makes One Day a pageturner in a sense, as you want to find out if one person will recover from an illness or two people will stay together.

This novel was a solid 4 until the unbelievable massive turning point.  Then it got so irksome and boring that I just wanted to be done with it already.  Reviews of One Day are very interesting in that people usually give it the highest rating possible or the lowest rating possible.  You either love it or hate it.  I didn’t hate it, but I definitely wouldn’t read it again.  I’m giving it a 2 for solid writing but a pitiful ending.