Source: purchased (paperback).
It’s 1999 and the internet is still a novelty. At a newspaper office, two colleagues, Beth and Jennifer, e-mail back and forth, discussing their lives in hilarious details, from love troubles to family dramas. And Lincoln, a shy IT guy responsible for monitoring e-mails, spends his hours reading every exchange.
At first, their e-mails offer a welcome diversion, but the more he reads, the more he finds himself falling for one of them. By the time Lincoln realises just how head-over-heels he is, it’s too late to introduce himself.
After a series of close encounters, Lincoln eventually decides he must follow his heart… and find out if there is such a thing as love before first sight.
If you’ve been around for the last couple of months, you may have noticed my growing love for Rainbow Rowell. I reviewed Eleanor and Park and Fangirl and even wrote an Author Addiction post about her. Today, I have another review for you – Attachments is so far her only adult novel I’ve read (I still have Landline on my tbr list – I’m trying to give myself some space because it’s the only book I haven’t read yet and I’ll have to wait and wait for the next one…).
In Attachments, we meet Lincoln, an IT guy who works night shifts at a newspaper which just began using internet (it’s 1999, people, I was 12 at the time, I remember everyone freaking out because they thought Y2K would wipe ALL TECHNOLOGY – which is insane if you think back on it now but what did we know then…). Lincoln is in charge of this computer program that monitors the employees’ e-mails in order to make sure that they aren’t talking about personal stuff/watching p*rn in the middle of their work day. He’s supposed to report any suspicious activity – he sends the offender(s) a message – but he doesn’t report a conversation between Beth and Jennifer, two friends who work at the offices upstairs. Beth does movie reviews and Jennifer is a copy editor; their relationship is based on these e-mails and contains a fair amount of personal info.
Anyway, since Lincoln doesn’t report them the first time (he deems them harmless, which they are), he suddenly feels like it would be weird to report them now, but their messages keep popping up in his inbox. And he keeps reading them, getting to know them in the process.
Now, I know you feel like Lincoln is an absolute creep. And he is. He knows he is. But he’s also absolutely harmless, a total introvert, he lives with his mom and is still hung up on his high school girlfriend. And again, you’re probably saying: How the hell is this guy a love interest? But it works, guys, it works, he’s clueless and innocent and a really lovely person underneath. He’s also jealous of Beth’s boyfriend and has borderline stalker issues, but that’s a minor complication. (Look, I know he sounds bad but… just trust me with this, okay? He’s cool.)
Beth and Jennifer are the best, though. Their friendship is genuine and warm, they even bicker sometimes, but always bounce back to being great friends. I wish there were more relationships like this in books. I miss great female friendships. Their everyday troubles and bigger issues are considered with such warmth – I can’t tell you how happy I was to read their correspondence.
Once again, I have to say that Rowell wrote the perfect book for me. I read this in two evenings, laughing and tearing up, and immediately made a friend read it, too (she loved it). Rowell writes amazing characters and takes a relatively simple, everyday story to a new level of relatableness (that is totally a word).
If you liked any of Rowell’s other books, I can’t recommend this one enough. If you’re used to reading YA, don’t worry, this isn’t a hard-core adult book. It’s just a book about adults trying to figure their lives out in the best way possible. And if you’ve never tried contemporaries before, you can’t go wrong with Rowell in general. She really is a master.
Have you read Attachments? What did you think?
Do you remember life before internet? When did you get it first? Or a mobile phone? (I was 14 when I got a phone and 17 when I got my own computer with the huge monitor and an internet cable with dial-up connection… ahh, the good times… *shudder*)
I’d love to hear from you! :)