Saturday, March 29, 2008

Love (and other uses for duct tape)

Jones, Carrie. 2008. Love (and other uses for duct tape.)

Love (and Other Uses for Duct Tape) is the sequel to last year's Tips On Having A Gay (Ex) Boyfriend.

You think you know people and then it turns out you don't.
You think you learn this and then it turns out you didn't.
People keep changing who they are and defining themselves by their own choices, and that's cool most of the time, but not all the time. No, it's not cool all the time.

My favorite list-making heroine is back. Belle. When the novel opens, Belle is facing The Problem. What is her problem this time, you wonder, well, in a way it's both simple and complex. The problem of the moment is that Belle wants to be having sex with Tom. But Tom is happy taking things nice and slow. She's weirded out by the fact that her boyfriend isn't wanting to "do it" and also slightly perplexed as to why he hasn't used the L-word yet. Why hasn't Tom--this wonderfully nice guy--told her he loves her? His actions all show that he does. But he hasn't said it. This problem is viewed alongside the fact that her best friend, Em, and her boyfriend, Shawn are going strong. Not to mention the fact that even her mother has a steady boyfriend. It seems like everyone is having sex but her. That's the simple side of things.

Belle, lovable heroine that she is, is still having some problems that even she's not fully aware of. Things that make her who she is in part. But things that tend to annoy her friends and family.

If you're expecting Love (and Other Uses for Duct Tape) to be strictly romance, then you might be disappointed. This novel isn't all about the love and lust of Belle and Tom. It is a novel beyond labels and easy definitions. It's a novel about life, about love, about friendships, about knowing and loving yourself, about accepting others. It's about friends. It's about family. And it's about love. The love between friends especially.

This novel explores relationships of all sorts and varieties.

Little Willow's review.

© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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