Publication Date: Currently Available
Publisher: Penguin Random House
Meet Lily Wilder: New Yorker, lawyer extraordinaire, blushing bride. And totally incapable of being faithful to one man.
Lily’s fiancé, Will, is a brilliant, handsome archaeologist. Lily is sassy, impulsive, fond of a good drink (or five) and has no business getting married. Lily likes Will, but does she love him? Will loves Lily, but does he know her? As the wedding approaches, Lily’s nights—and mornings, and afternoons—of booze, laughter and questionable decisions become a growing reminder that the happiest day of her life might turn out to be her worst mistake yet.
To be honest (I think you may know that about me by now–honesty first), this book almost took a brisk fly through the air twice into the land of who cares and did not finish. However, and this is a big HOWEVER, it didn’t. And I’m glad.
This very book is the reason why I don’t believe in DNFs. Ms. Eliza Kennedy with her brilliantly provocative Lily Wilder tested me. She essentially asked me via Lily’s outrageous behavior: are you tolerant enough? Can you look at the universally accepted truths differently? Can you toss aside all of the myths regarding female behavior that have been ingrained in you for, well, for forever? I almost couldn’t and that was the test–but then as I was reading, I thought: if this book were about a man would I feel the same way? Well, yes. Ha.
You see, Lily Wilder is a trainwreck. She drinks too much. She does drugs. She parties, parties, parties. And, despite the fact that she is engaged to Will, she is unfaithful. While the drinking, drugs and partying has been done before, I’m not quite used to female protagonists being so unfaithful and promiscuous. Lily and her best friend, Freddy, even have a conversation regarding the fact that sexually active women are given all types of derogatory names: slut, whore, etc., while men are called Lotharios or Romeos, all very charming and neat.
It was Lily’s characterization that I had difficulty with, but eventually came to terms with because I realized that I was a product of gender-gap-related thinking. Actually, I think I belong to a really big club in that because it doesn’t seem to matter the generation, if a woman/girl is sexually active, she’s given a label.
So, what about the rest of the book? It’s a very fun ride.
Lily has multiple step-mothers (as well as her own mother) because her father is, of course, of the Lothario persuasion. He’s never met a pretty woman he hasn’t wanted to marry and/or sleep with and he has a British accent and we know how American women are with that. The step-mothers are all different and funny. And, there’s the brilliant and sarcastically truthful Gram, who was a lawyer, but is now retired. Add in Freddy who is sarcastically funny and does the double duty of spouting common sense and joining in on the fun. Will, Lily’s fiance, seems to be the only normal one with his nerdy ways, but is he really all that he seems?
Besides the relationship issue, Lily is also called upon to work on a deposition in the days before her wedding. What seems like it could be a simple event turns into a disaster when she discovers the witness is not the brightest tool in the shed and that his knowledge could be damaging and then there’s the fact that a blizzard is closing down the mid-Atlantic.
There is a lot going on in I Take You and a lot of laughs. But it’s also provocative and thought-provoking. I am definitely glad that I read it because it’s forced me to think outside the lines.
So, who should read this? Again, I’m going to be frank. If you don’t even want to broach the subject of women having the same sexual freedom as men, give this a pass. It will raise your ire and your moral objections. If you are tolerant or willing to be tolerant, give it a go. You might find that you learn something about yourself and your way of thinking.
This almost earned four butterflies from me, but while the ending was probably true to the book and true to Lily, I wasn’t convinced. If you happen to give it a read, I’d love for you to get back to me with your thoughts.
I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.
From Amazon: I Take You
rating: (3 out of 5 butterflies, oh and a lady bug; you know, moral objection to halving butterflies)
ELIZA KENNEDY attended the University of Iowa and Harvard Law School, where she was an editor of the Harvard Law Review. After graduation she served as a law clerk for a federal judge, then practiced litigation for several years at a prestigious Manhattan law firm. She lives in New York with her husband and son. This is her first novel.