Taking a breather from vampires and their vampy world, I decided my next read would remain romance but that I’d move into the contemporary domain.
So although the next read lacks rapidly and often inexplicable eye colour changing—eyes do “darken” a lot, and there’s a lot of the same angsty melodrama: overall, we’re good.
First off to clear the air the title of this book needs to be explored a bit.
I mean who knew there were things called divorce parties? You think I would know considering I’ve heard of weirder things, but I guess you wouldn’t really think divorce = PARTAY OVER HERE!… But in a way I would.
Like if a couple really hated each other and finally sealed the deal with a legal document than logically a party with friends and family, you know, separately makes total sense. Or at least a silent hurray over those papers.
And I guess that’s what makes this one unique: author Jennifer Hayward has her hero inviting, yes you heard right, invitinghis soon-to-be (and in her opinion if he’d given her the asked for divorce his shoulda-been) former wife to their joint divorce party.
If this wasn’t a M&B Modern/Harlequin Presents—a line known for their financial fantasy contemp romances—then I would have thought hero Riccardo De Campo and heroine Lilly were trying to combine their parties to save on expenses.
Then I find out their house was a purchase of 35 million dollars! As Riccardo put it so often in the novel: Dio! Out goes the ‘expense’ theory, so what could possibly be a good enough reason to invite your not quite ex-wife to a divorce party? I’d tell you but then there wouldn’t be a point to get you to read it, now would there?
Back to the review!
I really enjoyed Ms. Hayward’s debut. She’s a fellow Canadian so I’m totally biased—I joke!—but seriously, this book is a fast-paced, emotional read. You’ll laugh, maybe cry, maybe rage, maybe roll your eyes, but you’ll like it enough to not regret reading it.
The story follows Lilly De Campo neé Anderson as she actually arrives to her husband’s divorce party shindig. Yah! Girl got guts…or a heck load of curiosity and tbh, I don’t blame her. I’d probably go, too. Though totally incognito.
And she goes and crazy crap happens involving a verbal contract/promises and the divorce is postponed until the end of a six-month deal. And once again you gotta read to find out what the funny fine print entails.
But of course they still party enough for Lilly to pass out (I joke she passes out for migraine-related reasons) and Riccardo to get her back into their marriage bed.
There are twists and turns and the book, like most short contemporary romances particularly of this publisher’s line focuses on the couple and their internal conflicts. Essentially what secrets and actions keep them apart?
This being said then don’t expect an external antagonist. If there is one he’s relatively minor and not really an “antagonist” at all—I said there were twists, right?
As far as sex scenes go this had pretty racy descriptions. Hot, hot for sure so if you’re not into that thing but cool with skimming through they don’t take up huge amounts of space in the book—like 2-5 pages tops of a total of ~182.
What I didn’t like was few and far between. Before I read this book a lot of reviewers who gave it 2 stars below complained about the heroine and how she was SO WRONG for cheating on her husband during the year they were separated. These same reviewers apparently read the whole book and as I read those last pages myself I began wondering if we had read the same book.
(“Hello fellow reviewers, we are all reading The Divorce Party by Jennifer Hayward right? RIGHT? DIO!”)
Seriously weird stuff considering I didn’t find Lilly in the wrong at all. Personally Riccardo was slightly more at fault, and I wished the whole debacle with the doctored photos (read it and you’ll know what I speak of!) was just brushed under the rug. But I don’t know what the heck I really expected—for the story to info-dump techy info on me while the photos were traced back to the source.
Though I definitely don’t want that*shudders* that hardly excuses the way this major source of long-ass conflict was handled.
Re-enactment (not actual textual event):
setting some really expensive island villa or something
Riccardo: I swear those are doctored, you gots to believe me Lilly!
Lilly:Uhh…fine. I guess. I mean it’s not like you and all.
Riccardo:Yeah totally. No where were we mi caro?
Now as for the whole cheating crime blackening Lilly against readers/reviewers let me put it this way: say you’re married and your partner refuses to offer you a divorce on w/e messed up grounds–why the eff wouldn’t you try to move on anyways? I mean, and this is no spoiler, Lilly is trying to divorce Riccardo for a year. The party doesn’t take place the morning she decides to leave his ass–it takes place a friggin’ whole year after she choose to separate their living situation.
If anyone refuses you a divorce then THEY’RE in the wrong. And if you have decided to enter the dating scene then why the eff shouldn’t you be able to? Technically, yes technically it’s extramarital relations, but I think a marriage ends the moment one party decides it ain’t a mutual affair anymore. And no, I won’t get into a cultural or religious debate about it.
These are my opinions, okay?
But read the book and maybe post your own thoughts in the form of a review.
I do tip my proverbial hat off to Ms. Hayward for tapping into a sensitive subject. I’m currently in the middle of playing catch up with ABC’s The Mistresses and this whole extramarital affair and divorce topics are just buzzing through my head as of late.
Regardless of what you think, please enjoy The Divorce Party for yourself and don’t let a review sway you from reading it and making your own conclusions about it. Cool?