Good Neighbors by Sheila Roberts

Good Neighbors

Little did I know that it would be such a short novella; only 77 pages.
Despite being a slow-reader, I finished with this book in a matter of a few hours.

The first thing that came to mind when I was done was – it was such a whirlwind; everything moves too quickly and that makes it a bit hard to keep up.

I do find the plot is loving and entertaining enough to make me frown and had my eyes welling up. For instance, Meredith weighs her guilt over quashing Jed’s dream of building a youth camp and her son’s equilibrium and then concludes her son’s stability outweighs the needs of other kids. It bugged me a little; I know where she’s coming from, it’s totally understandable for being a single-mother, but isn’t she being a bit selfish? Couldn’t she be as compassionate towards other kids as she would to her son??

Meredith’s willingness and stubbornness in clinging to the cabin she’s inherited from her parents provoke a run-off with Jed and eventually break their relationship as well as the fledgling bond with her son.
To be honest, I was scoffing at her, thinking “well, it serves you right for being big-headed!” (Look at how narrow-minded and mean I can be… :/ )
Although she claims she cares about her son and she did what she thought would be best for him, it is undeniable that she chose an easy way out by moving in her family’s cabin rather than staying where they were. She uprooted his son from his friends; could she really claim that she acted with her son’s best interest in mind?

Of course, there are some enlightening moments in this novella; a youth-mentor, Willie’s words were so profound that sank in on me so naturally and easily. He challenges Leo in a provocative way and has Leo deny that he is a loser who is running away from home rather than giving his situation a chance. This is definitely one of the most light-shedding moments in this book.

Sadly to say, the plot flows too fast to grasp exactly where the love between Meredith and Jed starts to blossom and it left me a bit confused, yet the Christmas scene in the end is beautifully written, I found my eyes welling up reading it through. It does a pretty good job to recoup some flows that come with being a bit too short. In addition to that, all the emotional ups and downs that I had should be a testament that this book is surprisingly delightful.

Despite some downsides that I touched upon, there’s one thing that I totally agree;

“She’d always been a sucker for a man in a suit and tie.”
Well, so have I. Can’t help it!! XD

 

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