The book is an emotional roller coaster. The reader joins Georgie on her quest to rebuild her broken relationship. Wondering is she can fix the marriage, if it is worth fixing, and if marriage and happiness are mutually exclusive.
It was a very interesting narrative, with this one science fiction element in an otherwise ordinary fiction novel. It is so well intermingled, by the end of the novel it seems so ordinary; as though, magic phones should exist, for the sole purpose of healing. Each element of the novel, and each chapter, worked so well together, pushing in to other moments, entwining the story with meaning and subtly changing Georgie's personality and perspective on life and love.
Georgie has many insecurities, most of which are rolled up in her marriage. She knows her life choices are affecting her husband's happiness. That her happiness directly leads to his unhappiness. It is the old choice between career and family; where Georgie is failing to control her time with one, sacrificing time with the other. The reader feels for her, understanding her selfish need for both; why should she have to choose? But at the same time, the reader understands the same could be said for Neal; why should he have to sacrifice so much? Somehow, to make this marriage work, they both need to compromise. They both "need to be better" to the other.
This book nails marriage on the head. It is hard, it is work. As divorce statistics clearly show, love is not always enough. It is sometimes an effort to keep yourselves together, especially after children come along. As Georgie states, children take up all of your time; you would not change having them for the world, but you know they have irrevocably changed the dynamic of your marriage. There is space now between you two, filled with little ones, that you have to consciously move through. It becomes extra important to make time for your significant other, to remember this is the person you love, your best friend, the one you promised 'forever'.
The beginning was a little slow for me, but halfway through I could hardly put the book down. Hence the 4.5, instead of 5, rating. Although, this ranks as one of my top fave Rainbow Rowell reads, maybe because I am at the same stage in my life as Georgie. I have a husband, two kids, and am purposely finding time to be both mother and wife, to be both couple and family. Such a fantastic, and different read, I really recommend it.