Travis_J_Smith’s #CBR5 Review #183: One Day by David Nicholls

Fitting that one day before day one of the new year, it’s a book called One Day that I’m reviewing. Not so fitting is how long it took me to read it; I’ll give you a clue, it wasn’t one day. No, I was off and on with this one, taking repeated breathers with other books. You could say I’m starting to become a bit ADD in my reading habits. I’ll have a half dozen books already checked out, and due soon, yet then they’ll get another book in for me which’ll be given priority, and then yet another will follow suit, and before you know it I still have a half dozen books left and not nearly enough time to read them, making me have to renew them all. After that, this whole process may or may not happen all over again. Sometimes, I never do finish the other book(s); Different Seasons still remains only partially completed on my shelf, one of the few remaining books I own yet haven’t completed.

Luckily, the delays I subjected One Day to weren’t so bad; there’ve been books I waited so long before getting back to that I had to start all over again, but I had no such difficulties with One Day, owing in part to having seen the stellar (in my opinion and seemingly no one else’s) film adaptation, one of only four (or is it five? I’d have to go back and check to be sure) movies to ever make me cry. The book had nowhere near that affect on me, which might have a lot to do with the timing; I watched the movie not long after a rough breakup, whereas the book didn’t have that working in its favor, adding more weight to the emotional punches it certainly doesn’t pull. As with many others this year, I’ll have to rewatch the movie to see whether it’s a matter of shifting tastes or something else altogether.

That being said, I’d like to say my preferring the movie by a wide margin is a result of it feeling like a scrapbook come to life, and the book seeming to dwell more on the moments, not so much an issue with the good, but bothersome during the bad; neither is particularly long, but the book feels noticeably longer. This is all rather vague, I know, but it’s all I have for you, since I’m going to have to cheat yet again and say I’ll just need to revisit this once I give the movie another go.

Baxlala’s #CBR5 Review #9: One Day by David Nicholls

200px-One_day_-_david_nichollsThe only reason I read this book was because it was available to check out for Kindle IMMEDIATELY at my library. And I’d only decided to check something out from the library because A) I spend too much money on books but even if I didn’t B) we’re running out of empty bookshelves at home. AND THE LIBRARY GIVES YOU THINGS FOR FREE. But it was too cold out to actually GO to the library (also, it was closed, so…), so I was forced to go through my To Read list on Goodreads and look up each book one by one until I found one that was immediately available and One Day was the winner.

I was the loser.

Ha! Just kidding. Sort of. I don’t know, you guys, I can’t figure out how I feel about this book. I loved the writing, loved the gimmick (the book covers the span of 20 or so years but only one day from each year HENCE THE TITLE) but, for the most part, hated the characters. Well. Hate is a strong word. I didn’t hate them, but I didn’t particularly care for them or care what happened to them. OR SO I THOUGHT, because I was SUPER DEPRESSED by the time I finished it, so I must have cared a little?

One Day tells the story of Dexter and Emma, who share a special day after graduation, and their friendship and whatevership throughout the years. Dexter is rich-ish, posh and arrogant, but with a slight charm (I say slight because, while he is described as being charming in the book, I mostly wanted to kick him in the nards), while Emma is, well, his complete opposite. They banter and fight and flirt and toy with getting together but WILL THEY? WON’T THEY? OH MY HEAVENS, HOW WILL I GO THROUGH LIFE NOT KNOWING?

(I’m being an asshole. I devoured (not literally) this book and that’s because I desperately wanted to know what happened to them.)

I think, when it comes down to it, I can say this was a good book but I didn’t so much enjoy reading it. I read it quickly, over two days I think, but mostly because, as I finished each chapter, I wanted to read more and more to see where Dexter and Emma ended up over the years. And yet, I hated how real it was. I hated how much I identified with some of Emma’s thoughts and fears and I hated how the ending crushed my heart in my chest. Which I suppose means the author was successful. The rat bastard.