I Take You
Authored by Eliza Kennedy
Published by Crown, May 2015
I take you, but I will not take this book off the shelf again.
It is always refreshing to have a strong and independent female lead in books, but Eliza Kennedy fails to create dynamic enough characters in her novel, “I Take You.” Romantic comedies are always a favorite of mine, and I really tried to enjoy Kennedy’s new book. I tried and failed.
The biggest downfall of “I Take You” was its ridiculous character development and the way it romanticized infidelity. The theme of the novel was about how true love conquers all, which you don’t truly realize until the final chapter. It is very easy to be confused about the theme of true love when every character takes a turn at cheating and dissing the institution of marriage.
“I Take You” tells the story of Lily Wilder, a fierce, impulsive New York lawyer and sex addict. Lily is freshly engaged to Will; a perfect and charming archeologist. This blushing bride and her finance fly to Key West, Lily’s hometown, for their nuptials. All of Lily’s friends and family say she has absolutely no business getting married and the week leading up to her marriage she struggles deciding if she even loves Will enough to marry him. This provocative story tests all the stereotypes of the perfect relationship. Does Lily take Will?
Kennedy debuts her witty writing with “I Take You.” It does not surprise me that this is Kennedy’s first novel. Her characters lack depth, and her plot is all over the place. I think having a female lead who feels empowered by her sexuality is a positive idea, but the infidelity and then slut shaming from other characters really falls short.
Kennedy writes her story in a humorous tone. This tone worked during parts of the novel, but I felt that Kennedy tried to deflect all the horrible sex scenes and awful decisions the characters made with humor. As a romance novel, the love story line was flat and did not come off as sincere.
The protagonist, Lily Wilder, was a big wig lawyer from New York. While preparing for her wedding, Lily had a huge case to prep. Kennedy used a lot of lawyer jargon throughout the novel that I fear could cause readers to be outside of the jokes and not completely understand how the story develops. I believe the whole section of the novel that took place in the courtrooms could be taken out, telling us that Lily was a lawyer could have sufficed.
The values within this novel were awful. Infidelity is a sad part within relationships, and there is no room for judgement, but Kennedy romanticized this concept too much. The whole love story centered on cheating and open relationships. Again, the romance plot did not feel genuine.
In conclusion, I feel that Eliza Kennedy did a terrible job at developing her characters in “I Take You.” The humorous writing style she used throughout the story was just a way to deflect the horrid storyline and values this novel had.