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Save as Draft Hardcover – February 1, 2011
This month's Book With Buzz: "Little Fires Everywhere" by Celeste Ng
From the bestselling author of Everything I Never Told You, a riveting novel that traces the intertwined fates of the picture - perfect Richardson family and the enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives. See more
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From Publishers Weekly
Lee, a federal prosecutor by day, makes a foray into chick lit with this autobiographical novel told entirely through e-mail, text, and Web exchanges. Tedious early chapters, during which bubbly protagonist Izabell "Izzy" Chin connects with an eHarmony hopeful named Martin, give way to a winning mix of humor and pathos. After a successful first date, Izzy dumps Martin for her best friend Peter; the two fall hard and get engaged, but the whirlwind coincides with Peter getting a demanding new job. E-mail, Facebook, or text missives show the spark fading as Peter gives in to his workaholic boss's demands and Izzy drifts back to Martin. Lee's inherently intimate format succeeds most when a character's thoughts are revealed in unsent e-mails ("save as Draft"), revealing the outcomes that could have been had more fearless actions been taken and how matters are misinterpreted and misunderstood. Lee further complicates her formal stew with comic exchanges between friends addressing online dating and the true nature of marriage with decidedly mixed results. This is an honest and oddly relatable novel that unfolds in a sometimes clunky format. (Feb.)
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Save as Draft is a witty and page-turning look at dating mores in the internet age. It’s also filled with heart. After a bad e-harmony date, don’t despair! Come home, curl up with a glass of Cabernet, and read this book by Cavanaugh Lee. She’s great company and she’ll never de-friend you.”
—Amy Sohn, author of Prospect Park West
“Reading Save as Draft gives the vicarious thrill of peeking where one shouldn’t only to get drawn in by the warm and funny heartbeat with which Cavanaugh Lee has infused this up-to-the-second modern romance. I haven't wanted a guy to hit ‘send’ this badly since college—a truly good time!”
—Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus, authors of the New York Times bestselling The Nanny Diaries
"A quick, fun debut novel involving commitment avoidance, meet-cutes and falling in love in the electronic age."
Top customer reviews
My issues do not stem from the fact that everything is written in the style of an e-mail/text/tweet, but rather from the weaknesses found in the characters.
The story focuses on Izabell, a thirty-year old 'looking for love'. I don't like to deride this, but by the way she is presented, I gathered very quickly that she is already massively in love with her wonderful, quirky, fun-loving, risk-taking, AMAZING self. Izabell is not a mean person, she is just enormously self-centered. Everything is about her. All her emails to her friends are always concerning whatever is going on in her life and anything concerning her friends is more or less ignored.
The man she comes in contact with through eHarmony, Marty, is similarly full of himself (though Izabell is more likeable). He actually has a points system for rating women and actually whines about the women he meets being so sub-par, too fat (yes, he seriously says this to another woman), too boring, uncultured, not 'fun-loving' or 'risk takers'; all in all incompatible with someone as flawless as himself. Needless to say, we, would not be friends. That being said, I am certain neither Marty nor Izabell would want to be friends with me either. some people and, as it happens, some books are just not made for one another and that's okay.
Now, I know this all sounds very critical, but the book does have its merits. The story is light and, despite my annoyance with the characters, compulsively readable. Further, this is the debut book of Cavenaugh Lee and she obviously took a risk choosing to write in this manner, which is so relevant to the way we communicate nowadays and still rarely done in novel form.
The story itself is a familiar one. Izabell is unlucky in the love department. Every time she thinks she is on solid footing, the guy ends of being less than stellar. A product of the technology age, Izabell's unfortunate love life is told via the technology we all know and love (usually). Lee did an excellent job telling the story in an unconventional narrative construct and managing to keep the reader interested beyond the unusual format.
This book was a very quick, fun, totally enjoyable read. Cavanaugh Lee is an author I will definitely be keeping an eye on!