I Heart New York: Lindsey Kelk

I have had  a penpal from the UK for about two years now.  For the past six months or so, she’s been talking up Lindsey Kelk’s I Heart series which I haven’t found in the US.  Low and behold one day when I received this book in the mail from her.  And of course, I  knew I had to review it.

General Summary: After catching her douche of a fiance cheating on her, Angela decides to pack her bags and take the first flight out of town which puts her in NYC.  The rest of the novel is spent on Angela adventure in the big city.

Review: I liked this book, but it was what your stereotypical chick lit novel  I thought Kelk had a nice voice and I liked Angela’s perception of New York.  I also liked the fact that New York seemed to be a character in itself in the book.  But I did have some issues with it. Probably my biggest issue is how unrealistic the book was.  Angela spends a ridiculous amount  of time shopping throughout the book and there was little to no financial recourse from it.  The same goes from her dating experience.  It was a cute idea for a blog, but dating  and sleeping with two guys usually has more consequences than it did for Angela.  Another issue was found with how Angela talked about getting a work visa (as if it was going to be easy) that is not the case.  Trust me, I took Immigration Law if I have to suffer attend fourteen weeks of hearing about the joys of Immigration Law then it’s not easy.

Okay, so I’m being nitpicky.  I know that chick lit is unrealistic and that it’s fiction, but in a contemporary book I expect some sense of reality.  But that wasn’t my only issue with the novel. I thought the book embodied a lot of cliches that hate.  Love triangles, check.  Borderline Mary Sue characters, check.  This was actually one of the things that most upset me was how borderline Sue Angela was.  At the beginning of the book, I loved her character.  She peed in her cheating boyfriend’s bag which I thought was pretty darn epic if a tad bit gross.  But as the novel progressed, I found myself liking her less and less.  After a makeover by a new b.f.f., named Jenny Lopez of all things, everyone starts falling head over heels for her.  Yep.  Everyone.  Her two boyfriends include a Wall Street investment banker who has a penthouse and a rock star.  I am not joking.  And….throughout the book we’re constantly reminded how good of a person she  and how nothing seems to be her fault.

Look, I get that Angela is a good person.  But I want a flawed character some one who I can relate to when I read.  Not some character that looks like a model, makes every male within Manhattan fall in love with her, and does not find herself at all responsible for the fallout of dating two men.  Plus, did I mention how everything is essentially handed to her it’s almost groan worthy. These two issues aside though, I found the book to be a pleasant enough read.  As I said before, I think Kelk described the city brilliantly.  It almost felt as if it was a character itself.  And even though I got annoyed with Angela several times throughout the book I still liked her.

Best Feature: Great Voice: One of the reasons why I kept reading this book is because of Kelk’s voice.  I liked Angela despite her Mary Sue faults.  And believe me there were a lot of them, despite what some of the characters in the book wanted you to think.  And despite how unrealistic New York was depicted, in a strange way I sort of liked how naive Angela’s perception of the city was.  I will really give Kelk kudos for this.

Worst Feature: Unrealistic: This book was ridiculously unrealistic.  It’s chick lit and fiction and I should expect that the book isn’t going to be very realistic, but there were just too many groan worthy moments within the book.  For example, Angela spent a ridiculous amount of the book shopping.  I get that the British pound is far superior to the American dollar, but throwing $200 down every time you go out shopping gets expensive after awhile especially on a freelance writer’s salary.

Appropriateness: This is definitely an adult book.  The language is adult, there is sex in this book, and there are other adult situations talked about in the book.

Blockbuster Worthy: It would be a cute movie.  A little Sex and the City, but I honestly could see Hollywood going there.

Angela: Jemima Rooper: I really loved Jemima is Lost in Austen and I kept thinking as her as Angela throughout the book.  I guess it helps that she’s British.

Alex: Penn Badgley.  I think Penn can pull off the rock star look.

Tyler: Channing Tatum.  Blonde, blue eyed and in the right age group.  I think Channing would be a nice Tyler, but he would have to have his clothes on (at least some of the time).

Jenny Lopez:  I can’t help it but I’m casting J Lo in the role.  She’s way too old but it would be hilarious is she did play a character named Jenny Lopez.

Overall Rating: Seven out of ten hearts.  I thought it was a cute book, yet I wasn’t as enamored with it as my penpal was.  Perhaps it’s because I’m a slightly cynical personality and just kept thinking how unrealistic parts of the novel were, which distracted me from fully enjoying it.  However, if you’re in a mood for a nice light book and don’t over analyze these things I think you’d enjoy this book and its sequels.
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2 thoughts on “I Heart New York: Lindsey Kelk

  1. It sounds like this book needed a serious reality check!I don't think I would have been able to get over the pee-thing, though. Sounds very gross. But oh well. I have actually been seeing this book around, and I was curious about it, thanks for the review.

  2. Yeah, the pee thing was a bit gross. I think I wouldn't have been able to tolerate it as much as I did if I haven't read other things that were a bit more graphic before hand. But as I said previously, my biggest issue was how unrealistic things were handled. Maybe it's being a law student who is living on a very tight budget but I was just shaking my head how she was able to just buy a new wardrobe at a drop of the hat. My pen pal loves this book and its sequels though, I think for Alex in himself. And he was cute, I just don't think he was enough to make the book. I am tempted to read I Heart LA though, Kelk really does have a nice voice. Very likable. But there is some room for improvement.

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