Last night, or maybe really early this morning, I finished These Things About Us by Laura Beege. This is one of those books that I feel like such a butt about because it has taken me an embarrassingly long time to get around to it. Upon some perusing of the internet I found that this book is basically unavailable, but I said I would review it, so I’m going to.
This book had an interesting story line. Our main character is Tony, a girl running from her past in search of her mother. Tony no longer wants to be associated with who she was before and believes that by being straight laced and dressing completely unlike herself she can successfully start anew.
Tony might have had a prayer of doing so until she walked into The Dirty Dungeon, which I momentarily thought was a strip club, but thankfully I was wrong. The Dirty Dungeon is a pub owned by Alex and run by himself, his two sons, Trace and Wes, with the help of waitresses that typically fall prey to Trace’s charms, sleep with him, have a falling out with him, and leave, but I’m getting ahead of myself.
Tony goes into the pub hoping to find a pay phone and a phone book, which she finds, but before she can leave, Wes takes mercy on her and gets her a job working at the pub with a room as payment. Upon seeing Tony Trace gags and runs away. Trace and Tony have a very, very weird tumultuous. . . acquaintanceship for most of the book. I honestly spent a lot of the book completely disliking Trace. There were moments when I was like Trace isn’t so bad, but a lot of the time, before I knew what his beef was, I really detested him. After finding out his story, I felt for him, but I didn’t feel like that excused his actions.
As the story goes on, we get to see Tony struggle with who she is, who she thinks she is, and who she wants to be. She finally accepts who she is and that was pretty fantastic.
There were some things that were confusing to me in the story. Sometimes word choice would trip me up for a minute because the word in the sentence wouldn’t be the correct word for that instance like, asserted as opposed to averted. I was also confused about a person’s waist or midsection being referred to as their “mid,” which makes some sense, but the first time you read it that way it can give a person pause if they aren’t used to it. I was also confused as to the purpose of some of the characters, specifically Wes. Wes was such a nice guy, and I thought he was a great character, but then out of the blue BAM he’s a jerk and that’s the last we see of him.
Overall, the story was okay. I liked it, but I didn’t love it. I think I would have felt better about it had it been loner and a bit more fleshed out with more resolution as to Trace and Tony’s relationship, Tony and Wes’ friendship, and if Tony ever gets out of this mess she got herself in with her noble intentions. If you’re able to find a copy of this book anywhere I think it’s worth a read.