Review: 99 Days by Katie Cotugno

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3.5/5 stars!

The storyline and the major characters are all shades of effed up. Seriously. I wanted to slap Molly’s mom in the face a hundred times, Molly a hundred and fifty. I was yelling every creative curse I can at her for all the times she succumbed to her weaknesses, selfishness and indecisiveness. I wanted to kick Patrick’s head for being a jerk and for experimenting on power tripping. I wanted to smash his and Gabe’s heads together for their egotistical contests at the expense of a girl’s feelings although I’ll probably cure Gabe’s because he’s too sweet.

But I must confess that I just could not stop reading. Ms. Katie Cotugno’s writing has that pull on me. I remember feeling pretty much the same on her debut novel, How to Love. Like no matter how flawed her characters are, they find a way of creeping up to that soft part of my heart that wants to empathize and understand and in the end it did.

It takes more than one person to break a relationship and all these double standards on women are just too exhausting. I’m glad the author touched this issue. Girls are usually blamed as the seductress who deserve to be the social pariah but in the story, Molly never forced herself on the Donnelly brothers. Yes, she was hurt, young, weak and reckless and I’m not justifying her actions but she grew up with both brothers and all I’m saying is that it’s not so hard to understand she’d develop feelings for both and both the brothers for her. Why does she have to take all the blame?

Molly does realize she’s being a bitch and she paid dearly for it. It probably took her long to come to her senses but that’s the reality of life. People don’t come clean in a matter of just a few days, not even 99 days and this is why I’m cutting her some slack because everybody deserves a second chance, even a third and I’m glad Molly gets hers.

I believe the author is simply trying to put across the idea that just because people commit supposedly unacceptable things, they’re already bad people. These characters were simply messed up by their situations and their experiences and the author was able to realistically portray it.

This is definitely one of those books that reminded me I don’t have to fall in love with the story to appreciate it. Hats off to Ms. Cotugno for the great risk she took in writing this novel. It certainly paid off.

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