Early Review + Giveaway! Landline by Rainbow Rowell

Posted July 3, 2014 by Bonnie in Adult, Book Reviews, Early Review, Giveaways, Read in 2014 / 34 Comments

I received this book free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Early Review + Giveaway! Landline by Rainbow RowellLandline on July 8th 2014
Pages: 308
Format: ARC
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository


Georgie McCool knows her marriage is in trouble. That it’s been in trouble for a long time. She still loves her husband, Neal, and Neal still loves her, deeply — but that almost seems besides the point now.

Maybe that was always besides the point.

Two days before they’re supposed to visit Neal’s family in Omaha for Christmas, Georgie tells Neal that she can’t go. She’s a TV writer, and something’s come up on her show; she has to stay in Los Angeles. She knows that Neal will be upset with her — Neal is always a little upset with Georgie — but she doesn’t expect to him to pack up the kids and go home without her.

When her husband and the kids leave for the airport, Georgie wonders if she’s finally done it. If she’s ruined everything.

That night, Georgie discovers a way to communicate with Neal in the past. It’s not time travel, not exactly, but she feels like she’s been given an opportunity to fix her marriage before it starts . . .

Is that what she’s supposed to do?

Or would Georgie and Neal be better off if their marriage never happened?

‘ There’s a magic phone hidden in my closet. And I think it’s connected to the past. And I think I’m supposed to fix something. I think I’m supposed to make something right. ‘

Georgie McCool’s life revolves around her career as a TV show writer. She loves her job but when a Christmas trip with her family goes awry because of work complications, Georgie realizes her job is getting in the way of being there for her family. Her husband is still intent on taking the trip and leaves her home alone for Christmas. Staying with her mom one night, Georgia uses the old yellow landline from her childhood bedroom to call Neal one night. When he answers, she realizes the Neal she’s speaking to isn’t aware they’re married or have children because he’s the Neal she started dating back in 1998.

This seemingly simple story of a marriage on the rocks takes an expected magical realism turn. Georgie is able to take to her husband before he’s her husband and before all the issues that they’re currently dealing with rear their ugly head. Georgie can’t determine whether her ability to speak to him in the past is her chance to correct things in their relationship or her chance to end them before they even start. The ability to go back in time and change things is something I think everyone has wished for at some point or another but will changing things actually be for the better?

Landline is written solely from the point of view of Georgie and I did think the story would have benefited from having both sides of the marriage being told. I felt Neal was a slightly underdeveloped character and hearing his thoughts and feelings on things would have been a helpful addition to understanding it all. The reasoning behind leaving Neal underdeveloped seemed to be because it was meant to be clear that Georgie was solely in the wrong for their relationship issues and he didn’t need to change anything on his end. Georgie’s devotion to her career shouldn’t have been something she needed to feel guilty about and I felt Neal should have been slightly more understanding when Georgie decided to cancel their trip. This was after all a once in a lifetime opportunity for her and it was upsetting that he couldn’t understand that after all their years together.

The story focuses solely on the issues with their marriage and is only going to be understandable if they’re also relatable which I think will be problematic for Rowell’s YA readers that still wish to read anything by the author. The fact that Rowell took your typical chick-lit style novel and added a magical realism flair is really what’s going to set this novel apart from the rest and it’s worth reading just for that factor. The simple addition of a magic phone put a much-needed spin and uniqueness to a frequently told tale.

I was fortunate enough to receive an early copy of this book from St. Martins Press and now want to share this book with one of my readers! All you need to do to enter is leave a comment below!

Since I’m covering shipping costs, this is open to U.S. residents only. Sorry international followers!

Giveaway ends July 24th, 2014!


Congratulations to Dani D.! Hope you enjoy Landline.

Thank you so much to everyone that entered!



34 responses to “Early Review + Giveaway! Landline by Rainbow Rowell

  1. Sarah Sarte

    I’m not from US but my friend who’s in San Diego is more than happy to accept it for me!!!! She knows how much I’ve been wanting an ARC copy of Landline and how long I’ve whined about how long it’s taking to get published. I’d love to have the copy and thank you so much for this giveaway 🙂

  2. Leann

    Great review! Makes me even more excited to get my hands on it! 🙂 I’d love to be entered for your giveaway, please. Thank you.

  3. Honestly, just knowing that this book features some magical realism makes me so much more interested in reading it. I think you’re right that stories about failing marriages don’t offer the most interesting premises, so it is pretty neat that Rowell was able to put a twist on it.
    I didn’t love Fangirl, but I do want to give Rowell’s books another try, and this sounds like a great sort of book to give me a new experience with her.
    Thanks for the giveaway, Bonnie!
    Amanda @ Late Nights with Good Books recently posted…Review: The Thousand-Dollar Tan Line by Rob Thomas & Jennifer GrahamMy Profile

  4. How did I miss there was a magical phone in this book? o.O I had no idea, seriously.

    I’m curious about this one. I quite liked FANGIRL (and also E&P, though not as much) and I love the author’s narrative voice, but something about her endings never quite do it for me. I’m a bit nervous about LANDLINE because of the subject matter, too–since I worked in movies, I’m always wary of stories set in Hollywood if the person doesn’t have first hand knowledge or done a ton of research, and I’ve heard that this one is pretty problematic in that sense. Still want to read it anyway, though! Sometime. 🙂 Appreciated reading your review! How else would I have known there was a magical phone?
    Wendy Darling recently posted…ALA Vegas 2014: event recap + giveaway!My Profile

  5. I have not read any books by Rainbow Rowell, but I’ve gotten a lot of recent encouragement to check out her various works….it seems, by the reviews this piece is getting, a great place to start. Thank you for your consideration.

  6. Lauren Goff

    Omg I’ve been dying to read this! I loved Eleanor and Park! The story sounds really interesting and I can’t wait to read it! Thanks so much for the giveaway!

  7. Tamara

    I am so excited to read Landline! All of Rainbow Rowell’s books have been hits for me. She is one of those authors that never fails me. Landline has an interest premise and I can’t wait to read it! Thanks for the chance to win 🙂

  8. Laura Cushing

    Hi, So nice of you to pass this book along. I am a big fan of Rainbow Rowell and would love the opportunity to read it.

  9. Stella Maria G

    Some reviews have left me to doubt this upcoming book, but then I read about the “magical phone,” so regardless I’m set on reading this soon. Can’t wait to read Landline!

  10. rebecca

    I’ve been wanting to read this book for awhile now. I’ve really all of Rainbow’s other works and loved them and I know this won’t disappoint. Awesome giveaway ☺️

  11. Gianna

    I am looking forward to reading this book, and I’m definitely going to read your comment once I’m finished! I’ve read Eleanor & Park and Fangirl, but I haven’t had a chance to read this yet. I’m hoping that Landline is as good as E&P!

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