The Other Woman Author:Jane Green Newly engaged, Ellie begins to realize that Dan's mom is a little too involved and wonders if it's possible to marry the man without marrying the mother. As troubles mount, it seems that having a child and saving a marriage means growing up in ways she'd never imagined.
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Very fun, compelling British chick lit. As soon as Dan proposes, Ellie discovers more and more how close-knit his family is. At first she loves it, then it begins to work against her as she and Dan start a family and his mother becomes far too involved. Lots of humor but plenty of heart-rending struggles, too -- like real life.
Currently 0/5 Stars.
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Ellie's found her Mr. Right—too bad his mom's got him all wrapped up in her apron strings. Bestseller Green (Bookends; Jemima J; etc.) saddles her heroine with the mother-in-law from hell in her latest bit of comic frippery. Ellie's mom was an alcoholic who died when Ellie was 13, so it's understandable that at first she's "over the moon" about being embraced by Dan's entire family. But poor Ellie never saw the meddlesome Mrs. Cooper coming. Mrs. Cooper calls her three times a day at work, plays devoted son against desperate daughter-in-law, takes control of the wedding plans and then, after the wedding and then birth of Ellie's son, Tom, seems to forget that Ellie even exists ("Hello, my gorgeous boys," she croons into the answering machine). More and more significant troubles loom: having a baby is hard! Marriage is hard! Green offers scenes of real pathos. ("We've become one of those couples that I used to dread becoming: the couples that sit in restaurants all night and don't say a word to each other"). The setup is solid, but the prose is flat: Ellie narrates with all the energy and élan of a bored, middle-aged housewife. She perks up, though, at the requisite happy ending.
Ellie starts out in her relationship with Linda Cooper as friends, and is so excited that she is finally having a mother figure in her life. However, the more she gets to know Linda, the worse things get. Linda is a very controlling woman, and this becomes very apparent during the wedding preparations. And if that wasn't bad enough, things get worse when Ellie becomes pregnant with her first child. Ellie feels that if only Dan supported her, she could deal with his mother, but Dan in fact thinks that Ellie is being childish and is overreacting.
While the book starts off on a very humorous note, as things get worse for Ellie and Dan, the tone turns quite different. Ellie and Dan's marriage is now on the rocks and it doesn't look like anything can save their marriage.
I really loved this book, as I have with most of the books by Jane Green. With the exception of BOOKENDS, I think Jane Green's novels are worth reading and will make fan out of anyone.