20/09/2013

Book Review: Breaking The Rules By Cat Lavoie

Blurb: When twenty-seven year old Roxy Rule’s best friend and roommate accepts a glamorous new job overseas, she expects their relationship to continue as it’s always been—carefree and easy—until they share a heart-stopping kiss moments before his departure. Overcome with mixed emotions, she fights the urge to over analyze the situation and resumes back to her normal life in New York City, working for an intolerable boss at a dead end job, creeping further and further away from her own dreams of becoming a professional chef.

While things become more complicated between her and Ollie, Roxy is sure that nothing can come between two lifelong best friends—not even mild jealousy over a thriving career or a silly little kiss that meant nothing. In fact, it was such a meaningless and forgettable kiss that she convinces herself that it’s not even worth mentioning to her fiancé, although it is all she can think about.

Roxy’s already topsy-turvy life only gets more complicated when her sisters Steffi and Izzie suddenly become her roommates. Steffi is six months into a pregnancy she refuses to discuss and Izzie is in the throes of a premature midlife crisis. Roxy tries to take control of her career, her love life and her sisters – but can she really handle it all? And can the Rule family keep it together – or break under the pressure?

“Wait, one of our buddies is in town and he’s staying at this wicked fancy hotel. We’re all going there to get wasted and trash his room and shit. Wanna tag along?” He stares at Steffi. “One of the guys in the band is really into pregnant chicks.” He looks at me. “And I’m sure one of them is into chicks that are just big."

Fine debut. Cat Lavoie gives us a perspective of New York from the eyes of a heroine who's quite the art of cook book collector.

So Roxy Rules loves using the f-word, eating it and making it. Added to her resume is, family with sisters who have their fair share of slamming rock bottom, friend of a kooky crowd, assistant to a wacko boss, best friend and roommate of Oliver Frost and fiancée of a banker concerned about talking budget-cuts and tacky wedding ceremonies.

One kiss with Oliver at the point of his departure shatters her world and leaves her with the 'why did Ollie (my best friend) kiss me?' and the 'Why did I kiss him back?" and not forgetting, the "Wait, did I enjoy it?-Why did I enjoy it?" questions.

Time passes and the kiss issue is settled with the two undertaking a long-distance friendship. There are much too many problems Roxy has to deal with than a "platonic" kiss. Her sisters have moved in with her (think the ANTM house) and not a day passes without smackdown action. With the older meddling lawyer sister, Izzie, who's been let off from work till she sees a counselor-a case about crushing on a client, and younger sister, Steffi who shows up with a baby bump and chooses to leave it at that ("Woke up with it. Moving in with it."). And as if staying with the two isn't cause to fake a nervous breakdown to avoid work, she has her bugging boss, Greta the Nutter, to deal with. And did I forget the fiancé who's always lecturing her about over-spending and his mother who's pissed at her over-gaining weight.

Soon, constant conflict threatens to dissolve all her relationships (except with her fabulous understanding and supportive cast of friends) and after one more unfaithful act to her fiancé and a shocking paternal discovery, Roxy's world threatens to cave in.

So LOL–can she really handle it all? And can the Rule family keep it together –or break under the pressure?

A tale about finding happiness, a bestfriend, and putting on a little weight to piss your mother-in-law so you don't fit into her wedding dress.

This book would be so relatable to you if you've kissed your best friend (Err, I tried to). Though let's face it, this story-line of breaking then ruining the friendzone is a constant done-before in the chick-lit genre (Lying To Meet You by Anna Garner to name a [memorable] few), Cat Lavoie makes hers unique with well-developed characters and a suspenseful plot.

I don't think there's been a chickroine that is more relatable. She loves food like most women, loves bingeing like most women do, isn't exactly thin like most chick-lit characters are, isn't afraid of putting on pounds, insecure (but not portrayed to irritating proportions). Just about every woman could confess they'd go to a party just because refreshments were on the program list or doesn't mind spending hours in the kitchen if it is slaving for others.-second star.

I liked the supporting cast who were her friends. Adam, the gay who owns a bar doomed for failure since it's establishment, and Tali, the hilarious workplace receptionist whose appearance always put a smile on my face.-third star.

You should love the ending of this book. Especially towards it. The suspense is at its peak when all water breaks loose and it kept me awake through the afternoon (I take naps). It was brilliantly ended with revelation of secrets upon secrets and when you think there's no hope for the chick and her-the rooster, one command to the cabbie changes it all.-fourth star

Now, I liked this book. But did I love, love it? Almost. I really wished the humor could go a notch higher-there were smiling moments and one or two laugh-out-loud ones (I am that shallow, make me laugh so hard and I wouldn't hesitate giving you a five star).

My rating would be 4/5 stars.

Breaking The Rules, Cat Lavoie's fine debut can be found at

in both paperback and kindle.Or you don't want the two (for whatever reason, I don't judge) you should get the audio format also available on Amazon

I recommend this title for anyone who needs a novel with a chick who is more closer to human than a book character. Anyone who values family or anyone who doesn't. And anyone who loves conflict between fiancés, bride-to-bes and mother-in-laws.

Anticipating Cat Lavoie's second novel which I expect to be a laugh-out-loud, beach-y book. See cover here.

Always open to emails from anyone who'd like to gush about Breaking The Rules.

My work here not done here. Off to post my review on Goodreads as well as Amazon.

3 comments:

  1. So glad you enjoyed the book! Thanks for the review :)

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  2. Thank you so much for the review, Kobby! :)

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  3. Hi Kobby, I really enjoyed your review of this book you've got a great voice which comes over in your reviews (I love the fact that you take afternoon naps - very civilised) and I'll be popping over to Amazon to check out braking the rules! By the way Tracie Banister told me to visit your blog!
    Cathy B

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