Why My Third Husband Will Be a Dog by Lisa Scottoline was not my favorite book. In fact, I did not like it, so I’m going to sprinkle this very honest blog with extra pictures of puppies. Yay!
What is it?
So I thought this book was fiction when I bought it. It is actually a collection of her articles written for a column in The Philadelphia Inquirer, and these articles are about her life. In the preface she says that books about ordinary women don’t exist, so she decided to write some. This made me pause because at this point there are tons of books with ordinary women as the heroes; naturally, I checked the copyright and found out it was published in 2009. That statement made a little more sense.
Why did I pick it up?
Puppies! This is one of the books I decided to buy just because it has a dog on it. This one was not exactly about dogs, but some of the chapters were. Those were the ones I liked.
The good stuff.
At first I was enjoying the book. She made some funny statements:
“This is interesting, for physics. Natural law says that matter cannot be created or destroyed, but that was pre-Spanx. With these babies, you could destroy the matter at your waistline and increase your bustline, merely by turning your body into a half-squeezed tube of toothpaste.”
“A movie theater is Switzerland of the diet world.”
I found it witty, and I was giggling in the first 100-ish pages.
The bad stuff.
I realized she kept saying the same thing over and over and over again. There were exact phrases she repeated way too much. “If you follow” appeared so often that I started to get angry once I noticed it; now that I’ve said something you’ll notice it sooner if you read the book, and for that I apologize. She also kept calling her family the Flying Scottolines. I’m not sure if it’s a “my family is circus crazy” joke. If it is, it isn’t funny, especially because her family isn’t remotely crazy or abnormal. Like all families, they’re quirky, funny, and loving.
At one point, I noticed every single chapter mentioned that she was single. She drills being single, not being skinny, and having empty nest syndrome into your head repeatedly. Write what you know, yes. Write what you know 300 times in the same book, no. A lot of memoirs and novels about ordinary women focus on these ideas, but they’re written more naturally now.
The tone got progressively whinier throughout the book. There were a couple of times where I was actually annoyed at the author as a person because it was that whiny.
If you want to read it, I suggest trying to read it like a real newspaper, like one chapter a week or a day. Or maybe pretentiously say that newspapers are a dead technology and just ignore it to prove the point. You know, whatever you want.
Needless to say, the book is in the sell pile, and I won’t be reading another one of her books. On the plus side, I got that great Switzerland quote, and here are my puppies again.