Monday, May 12, 2014
Book Review: Mandy Hale's I've Never Been to Vegas But My Luggage Has
Summary: Mandy Hale is still single in her thirties and she writes a successful blog, The Single Woman. Her goal is to inspire women in her own dating life and with her successes and failures. In this book Hale gets very honest about her life. From her firing at CMT and her very scary and confusing relationships she has had, she doesn't hold back. Hale wants to share how she learned to love herself though and not depend on a status to make her feel worthy.
Characters: Hale is the main character, but she features a host of other people who are under other names so their identities aren't revealed. Such as her abusive ex, Stephen, who she gives a very terrifying account of after she decided to move in with him, and also of another ex who is called Mr. E in the book, who left her more confused than ever on if she should let go, or continue to hope he would eventually make a commitment. While I could relate to some of the stories she shared, particularly with Mr. E, who I would actually consider emotionally abusive, there are other times I had difficulty relating to Mandy. She seems to lead a lifestyle of perhaps looking down on such things as drinking, but she has made decisions that honestly I would question apart of my own beliefs. She seemed to say something to extent of many times like "at least I never had a drink!" I know I'm taking it too much to heart, but it seemed to be some sort of stone to make herself feel better in the middle of her own choices she didn't like.
Writing: The writing was very compelling. I think since Hale has experience in her area to a high degree, particularly with blogs, it was very easy for her to write a book like this. She knows how to make her characters pop off the page, and get you to feeling you are in the situation. There were some true moments when I had difficulty putting down her book in the middle of certain scenes. She is a great story teller.
Plot: For a non-fiction that could just be a random stories thrown together about Hale's life it instead flows very well from one chapter to the next. Each previous chapter builds onto the next one in a way to keep you reading. I would always at least read the first page of the next chapter to see where it was going. Also, I think Hale tries to make a good message from her own life experiences, and I hope any woman that is currently in a relationship or married feels excluded because of the direct speaking out to just single women. The message about taking care of your own spiritual life, mental health, emotional needs, and physical health are important for any woman, and I would suggest taking a day out or even a month out to treat yourself is just as important as when you're single.
Hale's book is a good read for women. There are some messages and personal views I found strong at times that they muddle certain aspects for me, but overall I tried to garner something to walk away from after reading this. I think though that seeing how successful and push forward about her life that Hale has been that it was a bit of a bummer for me to see how I have handled my own life.
Rating 7.5 of 10.
This book was provided by BookLook Bloggers in exchange for a review.