I’ve been a Meghan Quinn fan for years and saw a lot of buzz about this book when it was released a few months ago. I finally got around to picking it up and after finishing it, I’ve got some really conflicting feelings about it. Just a quick recap of what the book is about – Myla and Ryot Bisley have been married for years but things have been rough since Ryot was forced to retire early from his professional baseball career. Myla thinks things are unfixable and serves Ryot with divorce papers. He’s blindsided by this and hatches a plan to hopefully buy some time to figure out how to fix his marriage.
The premise was intriguing. As much as I enjoy reading about people meeting and falling in love, there’s something to be said for reading about a committed couple overcoming the challenges that come along with a long-term relationship. And we actually get both of these things in this book. The chapters go back and forth between the present day and the early days of their relationship. The chapters in the past were actually the bits of the book I liked best. The early days of Myla and Ryot’s love story were fun to read.
Ok, so as a general rule, I try to avoid spoilers in my reviews. But I think to properly process my feelings on this book, I may give some stuff away. If you don’t want my views to color your experience reading this book, you may want to skip down to the paragraph after the ‘End of Spoilers’ tag. The main takeaway is that I took issue with the whole divorce storyline, the motives and the behavior of one of the characters just didn’t work for me.
*** POSSIBLE SPOILERS BELOW ***
The present-day stuff is where I had trouble. The first half of the book was rough for me. I had a tough time with Myla in the present-day chapters. The fact that she would resort to divorce after a few bad months made me question her commitment to her marriage. Ryot was truly blindsided by the whole thing. And no, he wasn’t perfect, but men are notoriously oblivious. Even though Myla claimed she tried to talk to him about it, the way she acted after serving the papers, I’m doubtful she tried very hard to get him to listen to her concerns. The types of issues they were having, in my mind, didn’t warrant actually going to a lawyer to have papers drawn up. If she wanted to get his attention, she could have maybe threatened divorce because once Ryot knew divorce was on the table he worked his butt off to try to fix things. There was no doubt in my mind that he loved his wife very much and even if he may have lost sight of his priorities, he never did anything to intentionally hurt her. Not to mention, his entire life and livelihood were turned upside down by his unplanned retirement and I think that Myla was very insensitive to that and made everything about her.
Another thing I took issue with was the way Myla acted after she gave him the divorce papers. Her behavior was beyond childish and it made me crazy. Stealing the batteries from the remote, taking his laundry, car, and food, tilting framed photos on the wall, not to mention walking around the house topless. It was just too much. If she genuinely wanted out, she should have just let him be rather than antagonizing him constantly.
I mean I know she’s got a lot of baggage due to her upbringing (her mother was truly awful) but that can only excuse so much. I think that she, and possibly she and Ryot together, needed therapy to help her figure out how to be in a healthy relationship.
*** END OF SPOILERS ***
There is a turning point about halfway where this awful behavior stops and they actually start working on things. I enjoyed the second half of the book so much more than the first half. With the exception of a few bits right at the end, pretty much everything that happened once they got to Napa was much more enjoyable than the first half of the book for me. I rolled my eyes a lot while reading this but the bits showing us Myla and Ryot’s early days and Ryot as a character were the things that saved it for me. I know a lot of people loved this book but it was definitely a bumpy ride for me.