Monday, July 17, 2023

Book Review: Pity Date

A week ago, if you told me my boyfriend was cheating on me, I would have called you a liar.

If you said a movie star would walk into my bakery and offer to help make my ex jealous, I would have thought you’d eaten one too many of my grandmother's special brownies.

And if you had the audacity to suggest my fake date would turn into the love of my life? I would have told you to stop toying with me. I’ve been through enough disappointment lately.

There’s no way a movie star is going to fall in love with a bakery owner from Wisconsin. This isn’t a Hallmark movie.

But I'm starting to wish it was… (Synopsis courtesy of Amazon.)

Melissa Amster:

Pity Date is everything you could ask for from a rom-com! Romance, humor, lots of sweet moments, supportive best friends, a cute small town, and, of course, DRAMA! I adored this novel from beginning to end. 

I liked the two perspectives so we could see both sides of the story, and how Faith and Teddy were trying to fight their attraction to each other due to being hurt in the past. They were both great characters and I loved their connection and banter. The waxing scene was super funny, but I will leave it at that! I liked all the supporting characters and it was easy to get angry at the "villains" because they were so awful. I especially loved Teddy's grandfather Theo. He was just so great and it made me miss my paternal grandfather. Also, I wish I could go to Rosemary's for some delicious sounding desserts! I also love that there was positive LGBTQ+ representation from Teddy's best friend and her partner.

I've been recently obsessed with The Other Two and the way people chase fame in this story reminded me of that show. Teddy's situation reminded me a bit of Pat's from the show, since she couldn't go out in public without being hounded by the press and all her fans. There's also all the rumors that make their way onto social media before you can blink!

My only "critique" is totally minor. The title of the song "And We Danced" (by the Hooters) was written as "And They Danced." I was all confused because I had a particular song in my head and kept questioning if that was the right one. Turns out later, it was. :) I just get weird about little details like that.

If you need a light and entertaining summer read, give this one a try! I even got teary-eyed at the end. I already can't wait to read Pity Party, which features one of the side characters from this book.

Movie casting suggestions:
Faith: Molly Gordon
Anna: Rachel Hilson
Teddy: Tom Brittney
Astor: Mason Dye
Lindsey: Victoria Justice
Theo: F. Murray Abraham (I loved him so much in White Lotus!)
GG: Michael Learned
Terri: Emily Rios

Sara Steven:

First off, the cover for Pity Date is exactly how I envisioned Faith to look like–the cute auburn hair styled into a messy bun, with the adorable red-rimmed glasses. There is a very retro feel to her, not only in style but in spirit as well. She’s looking for the type of man who will not only sweep her off her feet, but will love her for the rest of his days, and hers. Unfortunately, her former boyfriend Astor did not fit that bill, and cheated on her to boot. 

Teddy is exactly who she is looking for. They’re so sweet together, not only in the way they communicate, with an all-open banter that I find endearing, but there is a strong mutual respect between the two characters. She feels she can really be herself around him, but there is just one tiny problem: he’s gay. Or so she thinks. I felt some strong The Object of My Affection vibes with this type of scenario, considering just how much Faith wants there to be more to their relationship, constantly fighting with herself to accept the inevitable, even if it is a tad bit misguided.

There is a considerable plot twist about two thirds into the book, and while I was pretty sure I was right on the money regarding who it was and who it would involve, it was still shocking when it happened, and I wanted to see what sort of fallout it might produce. The first initial run-in between Teddy and Astor was everything! Let the games begin…

The small-town backdrop, paired with the perfect combo that is Faith and Teddy, really made Pity Date an enjoyable read. I appreciate old-fashioned scenarios and the simplicity of characters who are full on who they are, no matter what. For better or worse. It adds to situations that are at times funny, charming, or downright cringe-worthy, but it makes it all the more worth it.

Thanks to Whitney Dineen for the book in exchange for an honest review.

More by Whitney Dineen:

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