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Landline Hardcover – July 8, 2014

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Amazon Best Books of 2014 Selection
This book has been chosen by Amazon editors as one of the best books of 2014. Looking for more great reads? Browse our editors' picks for the Best Books of the Year in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, romance, and much more.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press (July 8, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1250049377
  • ISBN-13: 978-1250049377
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.1 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (301 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,031 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews Review

An Amazon Best Book of the Month, July 2014: In Landline, Rainbow Rowell once again shares her insightful, funny perspective on love and relationships, this time delving into a marriage floundering in the wake of kids, careers, and the daily grind. Georgie and Neal have been married for fifteen years and have two young girls who Neal cares for while Georgie works as a sitcom writer. When Georgie skips the family trip to her in-laws in Omaha for Christmas and the rest of her family goes without her, she realizes that maybe her marriage is going too. When a line to the past (literally) gives Georgie a chance to re-live an earlier pivotal moment in their relationship, she sees it as an opportunity to figure out if she and Neal should have been together in the first place. Landline is a deeply resonant story about being willing to go all in--at the start or after being together for many years--for the kind of love that makes “everything else just scenery.” --Seira Wilson


Praise for Landline


“The magic phone becomes Ms. Rowell’s way to rewrite ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’…what that film accomplished with an angel named Clarence, Ms. Rowell accomplishes with a quaint old means of communication, and for her narrative purposes, it really does the trick.”—The New York Times


“While the topic might have changed, this is still Rowell—reading her work feels like listening to your hilariously insightful best friend tell her best stories.”—Library Journal, starred review on Landline


“Her characters are instantly lovable, and the story moves quickly…the ending manages to surprise and satisfy all at once. Fans will love Rowell’s return to a story close to their hearts.”—Kirkus Reviews on Landline


“Rowell is, as always, a fluent and enjoyable writer—the pages whip by.”—Publishers Weekly on Landline


"Keen psychological insight, irrepressible humor and a supernatural twist: a woman can call her husband in the past." —Time Magazine on Landline


“The dialogue flows naturally; it’s zippy, funny, and fresh. The flirtation between young Georgie and Neal is genuinely romantic.” —Boston Globe


“After the blazing successes of Eleanor & Park, Fangirl and Attachments, it’s become clear that Rowell is an absolute master of rendering emotionally authentic and absorbing stories...While the novel soars in its more poignant moments, Rowell injects the proper dose of humor to keep you laughing through your tears.” —RT Book Reviews on Landline

“To skip her work because of its rom-com sheen would be to miss out on the kind of swift, canny honesty of that passage, which is typical of the pleasures of Landline — it’s a book that’s a joy from sentence to sentence, and on that intimate level there’s absolutely nothing unoriginal or clichéd in the way Rowell thinks.  Her work is dense with moments of sharp observation…and humor.” —Chicago Tribune Printers Row


“But a focus on the endings is the wrong one when you’re reading a book of Rowell’s. What matters most are the middles, which she packs with thoughtful dissections of how we live today, reflections upon the many ways in which we can love and connect as humans, and tacit reassurances of the validity of our feelings regardless of our particular experiences.” — on Landline


Landline might not have any teenage protagonists, but it does have all the pleasures of Rowell’s YA work — immediate writing that’s warm and energetic” —


"More gentle, more real than Douglas Coupland, more smooth and also more clever than Helen Fielding. Truly, slowly, sweetly gorgeous." —The Globe & Mail



Praise for Rainbow Rowell:


“An honest, heart-wrenching portrayal of imperfect but unforgettable love.”—The Horn Book (winner of The Horn Book Award for fiction) on Eleanor & Park


“Touching and utterly real.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review) on Fangirl


“Rowell’s writing swings from profane to profound, but it’s always real and always raw.”—Petra Mayer for NPR Books on Eleanor & Park

“Consider me a fangirl of this charming coming-of-age tale.”—Entertainment Weekly on Fangirl

Eleanor & Park reminded me not just what it’s like to be young and in love with a girl, but also what it’s like to be young and in love with a book.”—John Green, The New York Times Book Review on Eleanor & Park

“Fangirl is a deliciously warmhearted nerd-power ballad destined for greatness.”—New York Journal of Books on Fangirl


“Absolutely captivating.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review) on Fangirl


“The pure, fear-laced, yet steadily maturing relationship Eleanor and Park develop is urgent and breathtaking and, of course, heartbreaking, too.”—Booklist (starred review) on Eleanor & Park


“Funny, hopeful, foulmouthed, sexy, and tear-jerking, this winning romance will captivate teen and adult readers alike.”—Kirkus (starred review) on Eleanor & Park





More About the Author

Rainbow Rowell writes books. Sometimes she writes about adults (ATTACHMENTS and LANDLINE). Sometimes she writes about teenagers (ELEANOR & PARK and FANGIRL). But she always writes about people who talk a lot. And people who feel like they're screwing up. And people who fall in love.

When she's not writing, Rainbow is reading comic books, planning Disney World trips and arguing about things that don't really matter in the big scheme of things.

She lives in Nebraska with her husband and two sons.

Amazon Author Rankbeta 

(What's this?)
#28 in Books > Teens
#28 in Books > Teens

Customer Reviews

Other characters were developed well and were relatively interesting.
It's just too much like a sitcom for me, rather shallow and depending on predictable and somewhat contrived settings and situations.
P. Mann
The way the story was going, I didn't really see a happy ending in sight.
Diego M

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

122 of 137 people found the following review helpful By MJacobsen TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 1, 2014
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I am a huge, huge Rainbow Rowell fan and have - up until now - absolutely loved every book she has written. (I've often said she could publish her grocery list and I'd give it 5 stars, ha!) So I was crestfallen when I turned the last page of her new novel LANDLINE and was forced to admit that I just did not care for this story.

Georgie McCool is a working mother two fabulous girls, married fourteen years to the love of her life, Neal. A television writer, Gracie finally - FINALLY - might have the chance of a lifetime: the shot at her own show with her writing partner and best friend-since-college, Seth. The only problem? They have to come up with a bunch of episodes in just a few days and it's the Christmas holidays. So instead of accompanying her husband and daughters to Omaha as they had planned, Georgie has to stay behind in LA and write her scripts.

Her husband is unhappy with this. Very unhappy. In fact, he might have left her. Georgie isn't entirely sure. No one is sure because Neal really isn't answering his cell phone. And whenever Georgie tries to call Neal's mother's house, Neal seems to be next door with his ex-fiance visiting. Or something.

And when Georgie's cell phone starts acting up, she desperately plugs in an old rotary phone she found in her Mom's house. {Enter magical realism part of story.} Can Georgie get Neal back? Can she give up everything she has worked for her entire life to make a man who has been unhappy for the better part of fourteen years happy?

You can probably tell why I disliked the book here. I really can't blame Rowell for taking the story a different direction than I wanted her to go....her story, her choice.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Diego M on July 17, 2014
Format: Hardcover
I'm a little afraid to write a review for this book, since the fans are quite devoted and harsh with their likes and dislikes. But I read this book because of the raving I believe I should give them an authentic review.

First what I enjoyed. The relationship between Georgie and Neal reminded me of a real relationship. Reminded me of the good and bad times (it happens). Reminded me of being young again, back in college, falling in love with my long-time girlfriend and future wife. I was also in a long-distance relationship, so I felt a strong connection with the characters and how they both wanted to live in different places. I could relate when young Neal and Georgie called each other everyday from different states and it reminded me of good times. This book's take on young love was beautiful and I hope it puts a smile on other readers face, as it did mine.

I also really enjoyed Heather's "pizza boy" a lot, and wish them the best!

But my criticism lies with the plot as a whole. For those who want a spoiler-free review: the plot, story and characters were not believable. Because of this, I did not enjoy the book. For more detail please read below.


-First off, the magic phone. It is never explained how or why it works, just the fact that it does randomly. How is this not addressed? At the end of the book, Neal tells her that he no longer has a landline at home. Does that mean that if she reconnects it and calls her Mother that she could talk to her older self? (ask for some lotto numbers, when people die...) Heck, why doesn't she just go back to her Mother's and call young Neil again. HE still has a landline.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By K. Eckert on June 15, 2014
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I got a copy of this book through the Amazon Vine program. I have yet to read a Rainbow Rowell book (Fangirl and Eleanor and Park are on my wishlist), so I was eager to finally read a book by this author. This was a well done book about marriage and family that has a bit of a sci-fi/fantastical element to it. It was a quick and engaging read.

The story mainly deals with a woman, Georgie, who is struggling to balance work and family. When she and her husband split up over the holidays (Georgie stays at home to work, while her husband Neal takes the kids to the their grandparents), Georgie is worried that something bigger is wrong with their marriage. When Georgie can't reach her husband on his cell phone for days, she is convinced that her marriage is falling apart. Then she tries to call Neal from the landline in her mom's house and gets Neal...but it's not the Neal from the present, it's Neal from the past.

This was a heart-warming read about family and marriage and the sacrifices people make to make it all work. There are a lot of trendy issues in here; Neal is a stay at home dad, Georgie works way too much and barely sees the family, and Georgie's sister Heather ends up revealing that she is gay. On top of all of this Georgie spends a ton of time with her co-worker and best friend which adds some tension to the whole thing, since said co-worker obviously has romantic feelings for Georgie. There is good discussion around all of this.

Georgie's ability to call into the past and talk to her not-yet husband in the past gives the reader an interesting look into their relationship. Because of these calls Georgie has a lot of flashbacks into the early stages of her dating/marriage with Neal.
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