Where Honesty Never Ends.
Genre: Chic lit
Note: This book was given to us by the author in exchange for an honest review.
Greetings! The Review Board here to share our thoughts on After Wimbledon. Before we dive into the reviews, let’s get the blurb courtesy of Amazon.
Should I stay or should I go?
After 12 years on the pro. tennis tour and four years with her sort-of boyfriend, Lucy Bennett has had enough. She wants real life… and real love.
Her life, her decision. Right? Well, no one else seems to think so. With opinions on all sides, Lucy’s head is spinning. And she’s stumbling right into the arms of long-term crush and fellow player Sam. Shame her boyfriend – his arch-rival – would sooner smash a racquet over their heads than agree to a simple change of partners.
As the Wimbledon Championships play out, Lucy fights for her life on and off the courts. The question is: what will she be left with after Wimbledon?
First up, Mr. Controversy:
Lucy Bennett’s life decisions are the focus of Jennifer Gilby Roberts’ 107-pager “After Wimbledon.”
She is a tennis pro contemplating retirement, among other things, while telling and explaining her choices to her friends, family (Mom and Dad are trying to sway her to stay in competition), boyfriend Joe, and a specific colleague in Sam Pennington who shares similar (IF NOT identical) views as she. Feelings are running high and hard as Lucy lays down the groundwork for her and her future.
DESPITE this read being out of my parameters (for I am NOT a fan of tennis), I gave it a shot and found that it was not too bad.
IT COULD HAVE BEEN MORE, but not too bad storyline wise.
“After Wimbledon” read smoothly, and that is a huge plus for me. NOTHING ruins a story than a choppy sea of a read. At the same time, it got boring in some parts, specifically when she gets indecisive in a few areas as well as the play-by-play in the tennis match.
First person view places a reader into the shoes of the person relaying the story, and I personally am a fan of these types of stories. In regards to “After Wimbledon”, the story paints first-person Lucy as someone who is quasi-narcissistic; stuck on herself and how she views herself. Her schoolgirl mannerisms gave me a chuckle (IF that is Ms. Roberts’ aim), and her describing the tennis action could have used a bit of gravy on that chunk of meatloaf.
Sam Pennington is an awesome character who has a decent percentage of depth that’ll keep many readers glued to the pages.
As always, reads from across the pond tickle my fancy with their spelling vs. Americanized spelling, dry wit, and zingers.
Survey Says: 6 out of 10 stars
As I said earlier, “After Wimbledon” could have been a lot more, but not too bad. This is a dramedy (more drama than comedy) for those who like to read about (nearly) everyday conflicts based on tough choices that need to be made in Life. Lucy made her decisions, just like the rest of us have had to make tough decision to either make or break our future and our lives.
Now the Unleashed One
I was unsure whether I would be able to cover this title, since I wasn’t originally assigned to it. However, the language was easy and I was able to get through the work in a matter of days. I’m not one to drag out anything unnecessarily so let’s delve into my thoughts.
Cover fits the mainstream look of chic literature
I really like the vibrant colors–whites, blues, and purples. The imagery definitely fits the overall feel of chic literature and relates to the tennis theme within the book.
Pacing was on point
The book was well paced. There weren’t any parts that seemed overly sluggish or particularly rushed.
Connectivity with certain characters
Shockingly, my favorite characters in After Wimbledon didn’t include the main character. Although she’s not mentioned much, I loved the determination of Jane the younger tennis player that looked up to Lucy. I also appreciated Adrienne’s candor, especially when she explains what it’s like to adjust from being an active player to being a wife and staying at home. However, Sam stood out in likability. The author did a great job in providing depth to him, and even when moments where he almost slipped out of favor, he still maintained his standing and only fully acted when the time was right in reference to Lucy.
Here are some of the chances for improvement:
In the copy that was presented to me, I used my Kindle app to read the .mobi file. There were a few spots where first line indentation was missed, which thwarted uniformity in the read. It didn’t take away from the read but it was noticeable.
The presentation of the tennis segments
The way the tennis matches were called seemed a bit dry. I think it would have helped if they were conveyed in dialogue, rather than Lucy telling it from her perspective. Being shown the action as opposed to being told it really brings in the reader, and this was definitely a lost opportunity. It seemed detached and I didn’t feel like I was made a part of the competitiveness and overall excitement that makes up Wimbledon.
Huge disdain for the main character
I really did not like Lucy the main character. I know the author aimed to garner sympathy for her situation but I just didn’t. She seemed extremely superficial—more invested in the looks and sexual skills of an individual than really caring about the depth of an individual. For me, there wasn’t enough growth in her character throughout the work for her to be deserving of such a genuine guy like Sam.
Two guys and a girl angle played out way too long
After Wimbledon could have easily been cut in half. Almost fifty percent of the book were chapters emphasizing Lucy’s inability to make a decision between Joe and Sam. It would be different if there was really a relationship with Joe; then I would have understood the difficulty of the decision. Yet the conveyance of the whole angle played out like Lucy was putting up a farce due to feeling some type of shame as to how the whole connection with she and Joe first began. There was a continuum of “yes, I’m going to make the right decision”, followed by hesitation, then “no, I’m not going to do it.” The first two happenstances I decided to let go, but the ping pong went back and forth throughout the story to the point of exhaustion.
Had more drama than comedy
I’m used to my chic lit having a bit of comedy but the drama in this was extremely potent. I’m not saying there weren’t comedic moments here and there but not enough to where they leave an overall lasting impression. For those readers who like a lot of laughter, they may get somewhat let down.
Due to the mixture of significant opportunities among the pros, I feel After Wimbledon garners 6 out of 10 TRB Stars.
Overall, After Wimbledon receives a common grounded 6 out of 10 TRB Stars.
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