Surprise Me

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 16 Apr 2018

Member Reviews

Surprise Me by is like two different stories - the first a lighthearted one about spouses “rediscovering” each other and the other tackling the more serious questions of parents, children, spouses, relationships, and even mental health. The two didn't quite flow together for me. I am a little disappointed because I wanted the lighter, amusing story about two people rediscovering what brings them together in the first place.

Read my complete review at http://www.memoriesfrombooks.com/2018/05/surprise-me.html

Reviewed for NetGalley
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Surprise Me—Sophie Kinsella’s newest offering—does not disappoint. Kinsella specializes in the humor that pervades her writing and in quirky entertaining characters.  This novel does contain those characters and her endearing way of writing, but also deals with a slightly darker plot twist.  One of the main characters discovers a shocking fact about a family member.  As the novel opens, Sylvie and Dan are planning to celebrate the 10th anniversary of their first meeting, which eventually culminated in marriage and 5-year-old twins.  But first, the 32-year-olds need to attend an appointment for physicals.  At the end of the appointment, the doctor tells them that they are in such good health there is a good chance that they will live to the age of 100 which means they might have another 68 years together.  This news is slightly scary to them, so they decide to start surprising each other so their marriage doesn’t become boring.  These surprises turn up some family skeletons and some family faithfulness.  I always look forward to reading Kinsella who is a talented writer.  I also have to honestly say, however, that this was not my favorite of her novels.  Sylvie seemed very naive if loveable—credulously so.  Thank you Dial Press and NetGalley for the ARC of this novel and for allowing me to review it.
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Kinsella's story of a couple who try to spice up their marriage by surprising one another is by turns laugh out loud hilarious and emotionally moving. A great read.
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I thought this was a charming, humorous look at what can happen when a couple feels their relationship has gotten too predictable. There were moments of seriousness, as there should be in every marriage and good book, and the characters were all well written and well developed.  This book kept me interested throughout, and even for a book that was a little bit of a light read, there were plenty of moments of tension.
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I already loved this author's work.  This book was no different.  It was a great read and had plenty of twists along the way.  
One can not assume that they know any other person completely.  One's memory of events tends to be one sided and not always the true picture.
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Very light hearted take on marriage. and letting your imagination get away from you. I enjoyed the book but didn't love all the silliness
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I've always been a big fan of Sophie Kinsella so I was super jazzed when I was given an eARC via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Overall, I enjoyed this book and following along on Sylvie's adventure. Towards the beginning, I got a little annoyed with her surprises (she's hopeless) and the whole "affair" thing. I found myself more captivated by the family secrets and the work drama. Again, overall an enjoyable read!
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Sophie Kinsella doesn't disappoint in this one!  It's a light and funny read, perfect for your beach vacation or curled up in your chair on a rainy day.  The characters attempts to surprise each other are funny and sweet for the most part.  My only issue with this one (and it's a small one) is that the couple in the story react badly after learning they are healthy and they will live a long time.  They start to question their relationship and their day to day life together and apart.  It's just a bit farfetched to me.  Overall thought, it's a funny story and I love how it ends up!
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I found this story of a couple contemplating many, many years of marriage ahead and wondering how to make it work and keep it fresh and happy to be very enjoyable.  The characters are all likeable and believable and I found the dialogue and relationship dynamics very realistic.  It was both funny and heartwarming.
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I’d be lying if I told you I actually liked this book. I didn’t flat out dislike it, but it was not Kinsella’s best work. The characters bored me, the plot felt forced, and it just wasn’t up to her usual good work.

The best thing I can take away from this book is not to assume you know everything about your partner because they might have a secret or two and surprises should come from an impulsive place, not be forced or contrived.

The surprise was how much I didn’t like this book. I usually really like her books.
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In true Sophie Kinsella form this book is written both bittersweet and with humor.  It's the story of two people who vow never to take their marriage, their love, and their commitment for granted.

Sylvie and Dan have what appears to be a perfect life together.  They love each other, their jobs, their lives.  After ten years together they decide they're going to do little surprises for each other to keep their marriage alive.  

But, what happens when surprises are just a bit much and deep secrets are revealed?
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3.5  Surprise me  stars 
Sylvie and Dan have been in a perfectly great marriage for 9 years and they go in for their physical which is the premise of the whole story. They are told they are extremely healthy and they will live for a very long time which sends the couple down a road where they doubt they can be happily married for another 68 years. It leads the couple to start planning surprises to keep their marriage adventuful. As expected with any surprise they all happen with comedy and nothing ever works out how it is supposed to. Some are boring and some are outright hilarious. The book suffers by being too long where you find yourself accidentaly skimming because nothing new really happens. There is a surprise plot twist that has a surprise ending which you really don’t see coming. I don’t think I really connected with Dan and I didn’t care for him as a character at all. Sylvie’s character growth doesn’t seem to fit either.  I think the very end is a cute different one that made me feel all warm and fuzzy.  This book wasn’t what I expected from the author but it wasn’t bad either. I know her stronger books are the shopaholic series which leave me with far more giggles. This one was new because it was an establish couple and it read almost like Sylvie’s diary and internal thoughts. I am still glad the author trusted me as a reviewing and granted me an ARC.
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Sylvie and Dan have been together for years, with a nice home and adorable twin daughters. Life is nice… but a little boring. They decide to shake things up by creating special surprises for each other. This decision will lead to shocking revelations about their marriage and family that neither could have anticipated. This book is classic Kinsella, the author of the Shopaholic series. Another perfect vacation read.
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This was an interesting book. I've really enjoyed following Kinsella's career - each book asks slightly deeper questions and then explores things just a little deeper. In this book, the ideas of fidelity, normalcy, and dreams are all deftly and comically dealt with. A fast read for sure, but an engaging and delightful one. Recommended.
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When Sophie and her husband Dan’s doctor gives them a clean bill of health at their annual check-ups and tells them they could conceivably live another 68 years, they panic. They are already so in sync that they finish each other’s sentences and anticipate each other’s actions on a regular basis. How will they keep from getting bored with each other over the next 68 long years? They decide they must start surprising each other on a regular basis and they must start immediately. Because this is a Sophie Kinsella novel, none of their surprises for one another goes as planned, with humorous results.

I’ll admit that when I started this book, I was mad at Dan and Sophie. As someone with a multitude of health problems who will definitely not live another 68 years, I found them to be extremely ungrateful. And I thought that the premise that they freaked out about spending the next 68 years being in a relationship with the same person weird. That’s marriage folks, whether you have five or one-hundred years left.

Luckily, the freaking out and surprising each other didn’t last too long. After one of his surprises for Sophie, Dan becomes distant and secretive. Sophie must find out what has happened to turn her perfect husband into a stranger. Not only does Sophie have to deal with that, the non-profit where she works is struggling. How much more can she take?

After getting off to a somewhat silly start, Surprise Me took a fairly serious turn as Sophie tried to figure out what was going on with Dan. That was a mystery to me as well and I could not figure it out. I was just as surprised as Sophie when it was revealed.

There was some comic relief in Sophie’s friend and neighbor Tilda and her son Toby. Still, I don’t think this book is as light as a remember Shopaholic being. Of course, it’s been a long time since I read that – pre-blog!

If you pick up this book expecting a fun chick-lit book, you might be disappointed. However, if you’re in the mood for something just a bit darker and mysterious but not too heavy, this would be a good choice.
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Surprise Me is kind of a spin on the whole "stale relationship is injected with new life due to wacky foibles" type of romance (and yes, that's a whole genre of romance on it's own). But it is enjoyable, distracting, and fun. That's exactly what I wanted.
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A quick read that focuses on life inside a  romance instead of one just beginning. Different view, but this seems aimed at middle aged married women.
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Love this author and the characters in this book. Can't wait for the next one!
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Ugh, I wanted to enjoy this book. And I just couldn't. I didn't care for the characters at all and the book read young adult to me as opposed to one for adults. While the content was clearly adult, the characters felt about 19 to me. I just couldn't connect to it 

I DO appreciate the copy of this book in exchange for an honest review, I wish I could have written a nicer toned one.
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I have not felt well lately and it has slowed my reading pace down quite a lot.  Surprise Me by Sophie Kinsella was the perfect book for me at this time. It was fast paced keeping me curious about what was going to happen next but most importantly it made me laugh.  Laugh out loud funny. That is rare.

For insurance purposes, Sylvie and Dan have physicals and learn that due to good genes and good maintenance they will live longer than most people can expect.  This throws them for a loop because it changes everything: when they can retire, how much money is needed to save, but most importantly will they be able to stand each other and be married that long.  Over the course of the story, there is growth individually as well as a couple. There are serious matters tackled but also quite a bit of humor is thrown in as well.

Thank you to the publisher and to NetGalley for allowing me to read an advanced copy.  I truly enjoyed this book.
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