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Recalculating (Kindle Single): An eShort Story Kindle Edition

183 customer reviews

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Length: 40 pages

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Jennifer Weiner has a particular gift for breezy storytelling. It's that breeziness, in part, that's helped to brand her insightful, funny work about suburban women as "chick lit," a term she both embraces and resents. While Recalculating moves by as effortlessly as her other writing, this chilling modern-day ghost story is anything but breezy. Weiner has created yet another identifiable character in Maureen, a middle-aged woman haunted by a husband whose controlling grip remains tight around her even after his death. Drawing on Poe's "The Tell-Tale Heart," Weiner's experiments with the paranormal achieve spooky effect. But the true horror of this story lies in the ordinary, the quiet, cruel everyday that happens behind suburbia's closed doors. Deftly structured, Recalculating covers both the terrain of a hellish marriage and the emotional revolution of one woman's trying to find her way to freedom. Even in Maureen's darkest moments, the reader can't help but root for her. --Simone Gorrindo

About the Author

Jennifer Weiner is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of twelve books, including Good in Bed, In Her Shoes, which was made into a major motion picture, and All Fall Down. A graduate of Princeton University, she lives with her family in Philadelphia. Visit her online at JenniferWeiner.com.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1099 KB
  • Print Length: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Atria Books (October 31, 2011)
  • Publication Date: October 31, 2011
  • Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0060M8GYY
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #29,804 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Jennifer Weiner is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of twelve books, including Good in Bed, In Her Shoes, which was made into a major motion picture, and Who Do You Love. A graduate of Princeton University and contributor to the New York Times Opinion section, Jennifer lives with her family in Philadelphia. Visit her online at JenniferWeiner.com.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

29 of 33 people found the following review helpful By Rett01 VINE VOICE on October 31, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
All the women married to someone who on occasion acts like an insensitive lout are especially going to enjoy "Recalculating," where that dirt bag husband Tom gets just what he deserves, and although he strikes back from the grave, "everything good in the world" has its own way with everything evil.

Despite some evil doing and menace appropriate for Halloween, this is really a lighthearted romp of a story, told by a writer who seems to be a natural at spinning a straightforward tale and who is very good at keeping things moving headlong toward a satisfying conclusion. Satisfying, especially, for the women readers; not so much so for the men.

There are many things implausible scattered throughout like old shoes left lying around but they really don't distract from the fun of it all, not really.

Tom is verbally abusive to Maureen, a suburban mom in her fifties, who has put up with a lot of cruelty during the couple's long time together. He also attacks her physically but he has never hit her. Tom pinches. And his pinches are by no means love tweaks. Maureen has the deep purple bruises to prove it.

The Stephen King moment comes after Tom has been dispatched from the scene and Maureen finds a box with her name on it tucked away in the attic next to the Halloween stuff. The story's title refers to the GPS unit wrapped nicely inside the gift box with a card that reads simply "Love always, Tommy." A gift from the grave that can talk and give directions. You can only imagine what happens next.

"Recalculating" is a story that's spooky not scary. It gets an adult rating for some of the language (coming from Tommy, of course), but all the chills are mixed in with the gentler jibes. Despite the treachery, you'll have some good natured fun cheering for Maureen. In the end, the story is as sweet as the single piece of chocolate covered caramel Maureen unwraps and pops in her mouth.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Alexa O on November 21, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
For $.99, this is a very worth-while purchase if you are a Jennifer Weiner fan and wonder what she's like when she tries out a new genre. It's not perfect--the premise is a bit wonky and Maureen is a bit slow on the uptake toward the end. It feels like a rough draft (and I gather from other reviews that it was written and published very quickly). As a fan of Jennifer Weiner's, that doesn't bother me much. Maureen, Tommy, and the secondary characters are all very well-developed for so short a story, and the plot is fun if a bit outlandish.

All in all, I'm glad I gave it a shot.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By JoAnn on March 5, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Unintelligent content, short jumpy text, no story there to write about or get involved in. Certainly not "spooky" like the last comment. Finished the last page and said "what?" Not worth the .99 to purchase.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Marilyn Monroe on July 22, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
Poorly written, flimsy, not even worth the .99 cents. This is a huge departure from her usual style and it simply doesn't work. unbelievable from beginning to end. Literally kind of painful to read and suffer through.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Meaghan Leigh on September 6, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Although I love Jennifer Weiner, I wasn't really a fan of this short story. I thought the whole GPS thing was a bit strange and completely unbelievable which kept me from getting into the story. It is a very quick read though so you can make the decision on your own.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By keas mom on April 7, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have really enjoyed Jennifer Weiners book but this one did not cut it. I should have taken the suggestions from the other reviews here and not read it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ivette Cardoso on June 10, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Very original idea, and verrrrrrrrry creepy. Great character development - not an easy thing to do. The story flows gracefully. Reads like a template from real life: when one problem is resolved, a worse one develops.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By S. Twohy on April 2, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I loved "Jennifer Weiner - the Dark Side". Holy Smokes keep on going. This short story had enough content to build suspense and deliver the punch just like a full length novel. Her narrative style is emotionally engaging without getting bogged down in too much description or side plots. Perfect for suspense. Gimme more! Forget the suburban wives and yearning chubs and follow that spooky winding road. A really great diversion from the previous "girlfriens and prospective housewives" genre by a lively and gifted writer.
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