The Best Day of Someone Else's Life by Kerry Reichs
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Publication Date: May 6, 2008
Despite being cursed with a boy's name, Kevin "Vi" Connelly is seriously female and a committed romantic. The affliction hit at the tender age of six when she was handed a basket of flower petals and ensnared by the "marry-tale." The thrill, the attention, the big white dress—it's the Best Day of Your Life, and it's seriously addictive. But at twenty-seven, with a closetful of pricey bridesmaid dresses she'll never wear again, a trunkful of embarrassing memories, and an empty bank account from paying for it all, the illusion of matrimony as the Answer to Everything begins to fray. As her friends' choices don't provide answers, and her family confuses her more, Vi faces off against her eminently untrustworthy boyfriend and the veracity of the BDOYL.
Eleven weddings in eighteen months would send any sane woman either over the edge or scurrying for the altar. But as reality separates from illusion, Vi learns that letting go of someone else's story to write your own may be harder than buying the myth, but just might help her make the right choices for herself.
And she's not the only cynical one to be seen - it seems that every one of the characters throughout BDOSEL has their own set of quirks and all appear to have suffered throughout their love lives to make them somewhat cynical. All of the women (and select me *wink wink*) are very sarcastic and tend to waiver towards man hating, but I found them to be a funny, lovable group.
But lemme get started on Vi's family, a ragtag, quirky bunch of raucous, overbearing, alcoholic Irish family. I found their family traditions to be a bit strange, but I enjoyed the idea of it all. They drank all day and made Christmas traditions of buying their own gifts and having a big party to wrap them together. It was quite endearing, in my mind.
Now for the true story - the weddings. While the idea seemed fun at first, it quickly became a repetitive story line that would be enough to make any one become a cynical old broad. So I really can't blame Vi at all for her aversion to weddings - heck, I might not even be interested in one after reading all about that hoopla. Not to mention the heartbreak that Vi endures throughout the book. I have no idea how I would handle that, but I imagine it wouldn't be good. You'll have to read it to figure out what I mean.
I find that Vi and I are alike in several ways, though. We tend to stack all of our hopes against one possible outcome, and it doesn't always work in our favor. There were other similarities between us, but that was the most notable one.
The representation of love that is found in this book was one that I quite liked - I believe that relationships are about work, rather than there just being a particular "one" that you're meant to fall in love with. I believe that there are multiple ones - it just depends on how much you put into the relationship. Because I have seen many "the one" relationships crumble and it's hard for me to believe that there's really only "one" person in the world for you.
But back to the book - I'm gonna tell you a little bit about my favorite character, Ben the tile salesman. I found it awesome that Vi and Ben formed an unlikely friendship through Vi's wedding attendance - and kept it up throughout the entire book. I even felt at some point as though Vi and Ben might become love interests. Because for a while, it seemed as though Ben was Vi's only friend. And it would have been sweet, but in the end it's not what happened.
What happened is through Vi's many mishaps and weddings, she met Niall Devlin, which made for an interesting love story. Vi's commitment issues caused relationship issues, and things got rocky for a while, but in the end everything worked out okay. I enjoyed the ending of this novel, everything tied up nicely and it left me with a full feeling. All in all, I'd say that it was a fair decent book.