The third thing you need to know is this:
Then there’s Tiffany…
Now, Tiffany is really something else. She’s fiesty and opinionated. She’s beautiful. And she’s been through a rough patch too. In fact, she’s still going through it, just like Pat. So it seems like a great thing that they end up at the same dinner table one night. BUT BUT they don’t exactly hit it off like most people would expect. Pat thinks she is weird and Tiffany says some very, um, odd things to Pat. Pat doesn’t really know how to respond to her, but remember how he’s vowed to be kind to everyone now? Well, he’s gonna do that. But Tiffany, doggone it, she just keeps up showing up day after day and Pat has no idea why. When he goes for his daily runs – she’s right there, running right behind him for miles and miles and miles, not saying anything, just trailing behind him. Then she breaks off and goes home. When they try to talk, she’s snarky and almost a little rude. As a guy, I’d be totally frustrated with the lovely Tiffany. (As a reader, I loved her.)
One day, Tiffany presents Pat with a proposition and OH! it sounds like music to Pat’s ears. He thinks on it, then takes her up on it with a childlike faith and high expectations, but MAN she is tough on him. Pat tries his hardest because if it works, then things could work out really well for him.
When everything doesn’t pan out like it’s supposed to, though, what does that mean for Pat? Will he be able to keep up with his goals? And how will Tiffany fit into the picture – all Pat wants is his life back with Nikki… And how does his family fit into all of this?
OH MY HEART, THIS BOOK, MY HEART!
I am feeling so dramatic right now because of how much I loved this book.
The Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick is painfully good – not in a way that breaks my heart into a thousand pieces or anything, but in a way that I love it so much that I WANT TO KNOW PAT PEOPLES IN REAL LIFE. What a guy! I have never before read a character that was so perfectly quirky and so believably odd, and it worked for him and the story. Pat had such a child-like faith in his love for his wife Nikki that he was bound and determined that nothing, nothing would stand in his way of ending the ‘apart time’ as soon as he possibly could. His determination to be a better man made me want to be a better person. He saw good in every person, even the people that were not actually all that great but it was because he taught himself to be that way – it was a learned response through an effort to change himself for the better. YOU GUYS!
Pat is such an interesting narrator – a big unreliable, perhaps? But aahhh, so good. He has a heart of gold and is so optimistic, even when terrible things happen to him. He picks himself up, brushes himself off, and keeps on marching toward his goal. He loves his family fiercely, including his wife, and there are glimpses into the heart of Pat that are so heart-warming. But one thing that I really love about Pat is that he has that wonderful vulnerability and naivete that I love so much in characters. He has some odd habits (that really do him no good, but he doesn’t realize it) and he’s had some major deception thrown at him. The way Pat transforms himself before the book actually begins and throughout the course of the story allows us to see how wonderfully he reacts to the hurt, the pain, the betrayal, and all of the other negative things that he has to deal with. Pat is a remarkable character in this book and I cannot imagine that he could be anything close to this perfect in a movie (although I believe that they can come close).
The other standout character is Tiffany – she is another odd one. Her past is really just as interesting as Pat’s, or perhaps even more. While Pat finds himself incredibly annoyed by almost all of her actions every single day, everyone around him seems to really enjoy her. I find this interesting, this contrast. Tiffany is a strong girl and has made some changes too – like Pat, before the story starts and still while it progresses – but for all of her strength and development, she too possesses a bit of vulnerability and a little something else that just makes her stand out to me as really wonderful. She feels so very real and I feel like I could actually know her as a person in my life right now.
Pat and Tiffany together is greater than Pat and Tiffany apart. See, they both are having to deal with big circumstances – big, life-altering, mind-boggling things that would make any of us just cringe at having to go on with life – but they DO go on with life and they are MAKING IT. But when they find each other – even though it is a bumpy path for a while – it is so much better when they choose to just coast along together because they both can at least understand one another while no one else around them can. That’s not saying they’re great friends or that they start a huge romance or they have these wonderful scenes throughout the book – but there is a quiet and slowly-developing realization that these two need each other and can do so much better if they go through life together.
And then there is some betrayal and deception – and the thing is that it doesn’t just come from one place – it comes at Pat from several angles at seemingly the same time. Like I’ve mentioned/alluded to, it’s Pat’s growth as a character that allows him to deal with everything and even though I never thought it possible, I loved him even more after all of the screwy mess he went through than before.
You guys, Pat Peoples is amazing. This story is amazing. It was absolutely, without-a-doubt the RIGHT decision (for me) to read this before seeing it as a movie
and since I’ve read and loved it, I will try to make it a priority to see it soon. I’d love to thank the Rather Be Reading
gals for bringing it to my attention that this was indeed a book because otherwise I’d have not known about this GEM and never enjoyed the time it took to read it.
I highly, highly recommend The Silver Linings Playbook to readers that enjoy adult contemporary fiction, stories with male POV’s, and stories that deal with mental health. I loved the way the author threw in some fun things that are regional to the setting, such a Yuengling Lager and the Eagles among some other things (correct me if I’m wrong on those) and I am amazed at how well this debut novel turned out for this author.
It looks like there is another book in the works for 2014: The Good Luck of Right Now. But dagnabit I can’t find out any information about it. I loved this one enough that I am extremely interested in finding out what this next project is about!
The Silver Linings Playbook will appeal to fans of:
Adult Contemporary Fiction
(but I believe there is crossover appeal!)
EXCELLENT Male Point-of-View
Issues: Mental Health
The Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick
is currently available for purchase.
Does this sound like an adult fiction title
you would add to your to-read list?
Have you already read it?
OR DID YOU SEE THE MOVIE FIRST?
Come on, tell the truth!! 🙂
|I know some of you are planning to just see the movie instead
of reading the book, but I’m telling you – this one is WORTH THE TIME.
WHAT IS THIS?
*Disclosure: I am not affiliated with Amazon nor am I affiliated with B&N.
I just really loved this book.