Pieces of my Heart
Break another little bit of my heart now, darling, yeah, yeah, yeah. Oh, oh, have a! Have another little piece of my heart now, baby You know you got it if it makes you feel good Oh, yes indeed. You're out on the streets looking good And baby deep down in your heart I guess you know that it ain't right Never, never, never, never, never, never hear me when I cry at night Babe, I cry all the time!
And each time I tell myself that I, well I can't stand the pain But when you hold me in your arms, I'll sing it once again. I'll say come on, come on, come on, come on and take it! Take it! Take another little piece of my heart now, baby. Break another little bit of my heart now, darling, yeah Oh, oh, have a!
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Have another little piece of my heart now, baby You know you got it, child, if it makes you feel good. I need you to come on, come on, come on, come on and take it Take it! Break another little bit of my heart, now darling, yeah, c'mon now. You know you got it whoahhhhh! I just kept wondering, is this how middle class educated intelligent people act in this situation? Oh well. It is easy to criticize. More than anything, I hope I learned what not to do if I ever marry someone with kids.
Which after this book, I don't intend to do. Oct 21, Antoinette rated it did not like it. Well, Jane Green has done it again! And by "done it again," I mean bored me to tears. What happened to the witty, smart writer who made me not quite as ashamed to read a book in the chick-lit genre? Granted, perhaps I shouldn't have read this fresh off a re-read of her To Have and To Hold, but I'm not sure it would have mattered. Clearly she phoned this one in. Where to start? One pet peeve, and I know many other readers have mentioned this in their reviews, is her use of Briticisms.
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Green has l Well, Jane Green has done it again! Green has lived in the States for some time and should know that Americans don't say "a spot of " or otherwise use the Queen's English. Especially when a forty-something British writer is attempting to write as a teenage American girl. I wound up not caring whatsoever what happened with the family at the center of this book. And you could see a mile away that said teenager was pregnant, but apparently said teenager was experiencing morning sickness into her seventh month.
OK, granted, it can happen, but someone needs to address that this isn't common. I'm not sure if the writer's the problem or maybe it's the editor, but somebody should have pointed out these problems especially the Briticisms well before the book was published. I dunno, maybe Green is the type of writer who nixes every suggestion as is every writer's right, since it is after all their book.
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What a disappointment. Sep 02, CS rated it liked it. This one just happened to be at my library, so I thought I would try again. After all, Green used to be an auto-buy author for me. The first third of the book is devoted to Andi, a forty-something interior designer who waited until her late thirties to get married. She is head-over-heels in love with her husband Ethan and her practically perfect younger stepdaughter Sophia.
But the older stepdaughter, Emily, is every troubled teen stereotype one can cram into a book: emo, goth, cuts classes, does drugs, binge drinks, and sleeps around. Emily views Andi as the usurper who stole her father from her, and Ethan allows Emily to manipulate him dreadfully.
Andi would love to have her own baby, but perimenopause has set in and Ethan is less than enthused about trying adoption or IVF. The second and last thirds of the book follows several different POVs, from Emily's first person narration to Brooke, Ethan's alcoholic first wife, plus Andi and Ethan and a few assorted others. Ostensibly, the story follows the arc of a family in crisis, the resolution of the crisis, and the fallout from the resolution.
But anyone looking for deep meaning or wise insight would be better served elsewhere. For all that the subject matter tugs on the heart and yes, damn you, Jane Green, I fell for it and had wet eyes at a few spots this is really a very fluffy, light, chick lit in every pejorative sense of the term read.
Green loves to dwell on details that ultimately matter not one whit to the story - we're given pages of Martha Stewart catalog descriptions of Andi's gay neighbors' fabulous dinner party hosting skills - but the emotional moments, the key definining character turning points, are glossed over and tossed aside. It's the equivalent of having a good gossip with your best friend about a couple she knows from her kids' school: sure, it's interesting, but at the end of the day, you have no insight into why those people did those things.
And why they didn't seek out family counseling years before the novel started. I really wish Green would stop writing about Americans. We don't call each other "love," we don't refer to being a "proper" artist, we don't "ring up" people.
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This time she moves the book's setting from Connecticut, where Green lives, to the San Francisco Bay Area - and as a Bay Area resident, it appears to me her research consisted of a week at some rustic yet five star Napa resort. Nothing about the setting rang authentic. But my favorite nitpick came at the end, when one character goes to London, raves about the Tube's Northern Line Jane, NO ONE likes the Northern Line, Californian expats least of all, and I can introduce you to several talks about how cold London is apparently Jane never heard HL Mencken's quote - usually attributed to Mark Twain - that the coldest winter he ever spent was summer in San Francisco and then said character goes on to complain she doesn't own a hat or gloves despite having spent three winters in London and time in Oregon.
But then, said character is not the sharpest pickaxe in the diamond mine, so perhaps it is to be expected. View all 4 comments. Feb 02, Northwestreader rated it it was ok. I was excited when the UPS guy rang my doorbell and handed me a big box of unexpected books. Apparently I had won a box of 10 fresh-off-the-press copies of Another Piece of My Heart to share with my book club. I immediately sent out an email to my book club friends heralding this windfall. I knew nothing about the book; only that I had won it. Within a day or two all the copies were distributed and I eked out some time to read.
It was an OK but unsatisfying read that is ultimately forgettable. Th I was excited when the UPS guy rang my doorbell and handed me a big box of unexpected books. The characters and the storyline all have elements that are quite universal and that most women have some exposure to or knowledge of—relationships, child-rearing, alcoholism, infertility, and so on. It almost seems formulaic.
This book and this reader are not a good match. Give me a book with an interesting plot! Give me a book with twists and turns! Give me some interesting characters, not stereotypes! Give me some content to think about! Need I say more? Jun 16, Kristin Strong rated it did not like it. This book was such a disappointment to me that I hardly know where to start. Jane Green has been one of my favorites for some time now.
Her books are not challenging, and I've turned to them for lightweight summer reading several times, knowing that I can expect interesting characters, snappy dialogue, witty bits, and a satisfying ending. So when I picked this one up at our local library, I figured I was in for more of the same. Oh, how wrong I was. This is one of the worst pieces of junk I've rea This book was such a disappointment to me that I hardly know where to start.
This is one of the worst pieces of junk I've read in a while -- and I've read some REAL pieces of junk in the last couple of years. Let's start with the premise. Troubled step-family, well-meaning stepmother, alcoholic mother, disaffected and dramatic and borderline delinquent stepdaughter, and doormat dad all come together to create a seething morass of malaise.
How does this happen? Drunk Mom DM reinforces BD's negative opinions of WMS, and provides a motivation for BD's dysfunction by being a nightmarish, screaming, insulting shrew who is incapable of displaying enough regard for her children oh, yes, there's a peacekeeping younger one, too to show up on time to pick them up from school. WMS desperately wants a child of her own, too -- adding to the mix, she's in her early 40's and unlikely to conceive on her own; IVF is too expensive and uncertain, plus DD doesn't want to adopt and upset their family further by adding a child in and he feels he's too old to start over with a baby.
Just like you would haggle over who takes out the trash and who changes the sheets, call me crazy, but I think you should probably have a five-minute chat about reproduction. Just a thought. Now to the second issue. BD, as previously mentioned, acts out, swears, drinks, probably gets high, and breaks curfew; she is disrespectful to WMS and DD. Please -- these are educated people. Of course, if they had gotten the kid into counseling earlier, the whole plot would probably have been out the window. Don't make me say this would be a mercy.
But for the love of God, I cannot believe that at least BD, and probably the whole family, would not have been involved in some sort of professional interventions. When you come to the end of your rope, and these people do on several occasions, don't you call for reinforcements? Even if it were only for my own sanity, I would be on the horn to the nearest mental health facility in a New York minute.
Be a grownup and put the kibosh on the disrespect and misbehavior. I'm not saying that this always works, but it's important that kids know your feelings about their actions and that those actions have consequences. Again, these are educated people and you cannot expect me to believe that at least WMS wouldn't have hit the library and cracked a book or two, or at least after one of her caffeine-enhanced chats with a close friend taken some of the advice offered.
Fourth issue: Dropping brand names is no substitute for character development. When you tell me twice that characters wear Patagonia and Reef flip-flops, all I know is that said characters have no problem with overpaying for status symbols. The people who slump through this book are two-dimensional at best. This is lazy. Fifth issue stemming from the fourth issue : Using stereotypes as characters is also lazy. Plus, when a rubber-stamped personage turns shrewish, say, as WMS does when she needs to show some emotion or what passes for it , it's jarring because we don't know where it's coming from.
Additionally, here we are in California, so sure enough, we are presented with the "Down-to-Earth Dot-Com Gazillionaire", who wears the aforementioned flip-flops and travels by private jet to his multiple homes; and with the "Warm and Wise and Oh-So-Kind Yoga Teacher", who offers tea and sympathy and child care to WMS when she most needs it. And then she goes away, bringing us to Sixth issue: These stereotypes show up only when absolutely needed and then disappear.
So why waste pages on them at all? They add nothing to the story and the Yoga Teacher is just a flimsy foil for WMS, and the fact that they're total stereotypes just annoys me. Spend more time on plotting, which brings me to the Seventh issue: If you can't see the giant conflict in the plot coming down the pike from a mile away, then I have no hope for you. There are more problems, and more characters to deal with, but I'm still lethargic from reading this snoozer, so I'll leave off here, but I simply must mention the amount of New Age-y psychobabble the characters spout, and the predictability of the whole ensemble.
These were the last straw for me. Yes, I finished the whole thing -- hope springs eternal, and I was really hoping things would get better -- and I'm sorry it just resulted in a negative review. I had higher hopes for the outcome based on the author's track record, but I'm sad to say she failed miserably to deliver this time around.
Sep 15, Me Alley rated it did not like it. The book often refers to Ethan as "perfect" and a "wonderful husband and father. This really bothered me and I never really got over it. Emily was a very depressed girl, and I won't discount her abuse or pain, but the fact that Ethan enabled this abuse is disgusting.
It i The book often refers to Ethan as "perfect" and a "wonderful husband and father. It is hard to get into a book when you do not like any of the characters. It's like the author kept repeating how "perfect" Ethan was in order to convince us, but I never saw anything to see him as this. I will read Jane Green again, and I am a fan of her other books, but this was tough to swallow.
When Andi met Ethan, should found a man with a ready made family. He came with his two daughters, twelve year old Emily and seven year old Sophia. Whilst she and Sophia instantly bond, Ethan's older daughter resents the new woman in his life, usurping her mother's rightful role. But Andi is desperate to be a mother, she was planning her family from the very first date so she throws herself into making a patchwork family, no matter what Emily throws at her. Female characters whose only purpose in When Andi met Ethan, should found a man with a ready made family. Female characters whose only purpose in life is to reproduce irritate me.
I know so many people will enjoy this book and completely relate to Andi but she made me want to throw the book out the window. I'm not saying it's not life-changing to find out you won't have kids but she has an amazing job, a too-good-to-be-true husband and at least one step-daughter who dotes on her. Yet she goes on like she has nothing else in her life.
She is completely obsessed with getting Emily to treat her like a mother and I just wanted to side with Emily even though she was being a selfish teenager. She has got a selfish role model after all, Andi never really thinks what anyone else wants or needs. Even when she is momentarily distracted, the hope of a baby is dangled in front of Andi and she loses all reason again.
Emily's character actually saved the book for me. Yes she treats her step-mother horribly but Andi is such a wet blanket that she is just providing rope to hang herself with. A product of a broken home, Emily not only has to deal with every day school life but she has a mother who is an alcoholic and a step-mother that sees her as a replacement daughter that's not quite perfect enough, especially not when compared to her sister, Sophia.
I loved the rollercoaster ride of Emily's side of the story. Her narration doesn't start until after the bombshell has been dropped and you've already been painted a picture of her as a rebel teen. She understands a lot more than Andi would expect and she's been really stupid but she's also been used. To see her grow into an adult from her very lowest point in life is really touching, even though she makes irresponsible choices again and again.
Feb 05, Elena rated it really liked it Shelves: chick-lit , fiction-novels-bestsellers. A friend lent me an advanced reader's copy of this book, which I thought was incredibly cool. This was a very engaging book, in fact I found myself reading really late into the night because I so desperately wanted to know how things turned out. Andi marries Ethan later on in life, and is stepmother to Sophia and Emily, who are the daughters of an alcoholic mother.
Emily is on a path of self destruction and she is bringing down everyone around her One of the things that always bothers me with Jane Green books is her narration. I don't think she does the perspective switching as well as some other authors Picoult comes to mind , and she goes a little too far with the omniscient narration which often takes her books all over the place. She also becomes a little Some of the best parts of the book I found was when you saw things from Emily's first person perspective- it made you not hate her like you thought you would the whole time.
Anyway, it's "chick lit" but with an edge that makes it not so fluffy. Rebecca I agree about the perspective switching! Mar 20, PM. Jun 25, AM. May 27, Lori Anaple rated it really liked it Shelves: chic-lit , beach-reads , But I thought it needed to be separated from the 3's. I related to both Andi and Emily. Andi, being the stepmother is in a precarious position. And Emily, being the teenage brat that I once was. OK, not as bad I didn't like how Green changed POV in the second section.
It isn't that I mind differing points of view, but I don't like getting into a flow with a character in third person and then getting tossed a first person POV. It made it a jarring transiti 4 is a bit high. It made it a jarring transition. I see what she is trying to do there, give Emily a voice that is her own and let us readers in on her inner thoughts. It just didn't work for me. The biggest issue I have is that it seems so trite.
Everyone is oh so proper. Even the fights seem delineated. There is a correct way to have the conversation that they are having and that is who they have it. Seriously, I come from a divorced family and I was a stepmother. We all don't talk like we are in a therapy session. And that is my biggest disconnect.
I did like it but I am finding Green to be hit or miss with me. Nothing speaks to me like Jemima J did. Mar 13, Leona rated it really liked it Shelves: romance , chick-lit. I was looking for a book that was fast paced and an easy read for a Cross Atlantic flight. This book did not disappoint. I found myself turning the pages engrossed in the hardships a ready made family faces when one child refuses to accept that their parent has moved on.
Typical of Green's writing, she sucked me right into a very complex journey with fascinating multidimensional characters that entertained me. But I was somewhat disappointed when she whipped out her magic wand to create the wond I was looking for a book that was fast paced and an easy read for a Cross Atlantic flight. But I was somewhat disappointed when she whipped out her magic wand to create the wonderful HEA. For the most part, I am pretty accepting of Green's magic wands because they are usually more subtle and fit into the overall scheme of character development.
However, here it just didn't work. I could never see Emily and Andi sitting down to a lovely Thanksgiving dinner after everything that went before. I felt cheated that I didn't get a real view as to how Ethan and Andi rebuilt their marriage after such devastating destruction. I am giving this 3.
However, the story could have been much more powerful had Green spent more time building a more credible recovery. Mar 02, Jen Fabico rated it really liked it Shelves: teaching , inspirational , first-reads , family , read-in-a-day , book-pledge , favourites. Another Piece of my Heart by Jane Green is book no. In addition it is my first first-reads book from Goodreads. There are several mini celebrations and milestones that I had upon beginning this book, which perhaps is the perfect way to introduce it. At the age of thirty-seven years old, Andi has finally found her perfect man.
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Never been married before, Andi has never really felt the need to search high and low as other women may have; although, as she feels her Another Piece of my Heart by Jane Green is book no. Never been married before, Andi has never really felt the need to search high and low as other women may have; although, as she feels her youthful days beginning to ripen, she begins to feel the urgency, the need, and the want to have a child.
Ironically enough, the man in her life comes with a ready-made family of two daughters and the baggage of an alcoholic of an ex-wife. And it is up to Andi to find the perfect balance in proving her love for her stepdaughters, supporting her husband through trying situations, and keeping enough love to hold herself grounded. Husband, Ethan, has always been able to keep the family running.
After separating and divorcing his alcoholic ex-wife Brooke, he has felt the heavy burden of taking care of his two daughters: Emily and Sophia. His younger daughter adores Andi and similarly, Andi adores Sophia viewing her as the daughter she had always wanted. Emily on the other hand was more of a handful.
Having resented her father's new relationship from the get-go, Emily is compelled to treat Andi as nothing more than a parasite to her family, causing tantrums and creating havoc whenever she can. And it's her rebellious manner that keeps Ethan on bended knee, waiting on her every command and willing to soothe her pain away, even if it compromises his own marriage and happiness. This book tells the altruistic tale of the balance of a family without the boundaries of etiquette. It delves into the realistic recesses of the family life that no one ever sees beyond the front door.
And like a good novel, Another Piece of my Heart has found ways to break even my heart, as a reader, over and over again, to the point where I had to pause, put the book down and catch my breath. The narrative whisks you away in whirlwind of drama and events, that similar to the characters, seek a sense of peace and resolution that can only come by enough experience of heartache, loveloss and resentment. And of course, that is just how it happens. Finding this fictional story almost parallel to my own realities of finding a nice man born into a certain type of family, I felt myself instantly drawn towards Another Piece of my Heart , its trials and tribulations, and the overbearing flood of emotion that leaves you with an ache in your chest that is so bad that it gives you butterflies --and that was a constantly happening as I read this book.
Read in a day, I found myself remembering back to a time when I felt like Emily --lost in my own home, receiving the support I needed but not necessarily feeling it since it was not the attention that I wanted as well as Andi --controlling a patience that has run its course to the grave. Families truly are a tricky thing to balance and this book will definitely reinstate that into your mind.
Admittedly, there is one setback which I had with this book: it's lack of consistency in writing styles. At times, I caught myself flipping back a few pages to see when the point of view had changed. And as much as I enjoyed this book, I do have to say that it was confusing at times. The verb tenses are inconsistent and the point of view changes constantly, even several times within the same chapter. If the writing technicalities were not so overbearing that it interrupted reading ease, I would have loved this book even more.
The book is definitely one that connects to a person's life experiences. However, I must admit that I may not have enjoyed this book as much if I had read it when I was younger and was still facing the difficult in-law familial distresses. But there you have it! Martin's Press for sending me a read that was so fitting! I am still in awe that this book would find me and that we carried out a fabulous relationship from the get-go.
The next book lined up for my reading challenge is 's award winning book: The Sisters Brothers by Patrick DeWitt. View 1 comment. Mar 05, Nikki Wilde rated it liked it. I'm not sure I've ever written a review where I said I hated a book up until the ending. That's never really happened before. I can say with all honesty that this is what happened when reading this one.
Andi finally feels like she's getting the perfect family. A husband with two daughters of his own. She's always wanted children and Ethan is perfect. However, 5 years into their marriage and she's having second thoughts. His oldest daughter Emily is terrible. She's mean and spiteful and trying to I'm not sure I've ever written a review where I said I hated a book up until the ending. She's mean and spiteful and trying to drive a wedge between them. His youngest daughter Sophia is the opposite of Emily but she's not quite enough and Andi's almost at her breaking point. Andi is terrible.
Always letting Ethan fight her battles. I can't believe how she treated him. I understand she didn't want to step in and handle things on her own but someone really needed to. Emily was forever getting her own way and causing friction. How Ethan couldn't see that and change things was beyond me. I felt for Andi at first and then I started despising her.
I didn't like how she would always bicker with Ethan behind closed doors. I found Andi to be whiny and almost as childish as Emily at times. Emily is a nightmare. A child that was never disciplined and led to believe that by crying she can get anything she wanted. She was hateful and mean and the worst person.
What she did to her family was disgusting. Her entire family enabled her to act the way she did. Ethan being the worst offender. What finally turned me around a bit was the last few chapters. Where everything really comes to a head. The speeches and explanations that come from both sides are thought out, heartfelt and meaningful. I was glad that both sides were getting everything out and I enjoyed that a lot. There were so many different family dynamics going on in this one. I feel like a lot of families do go through similar problems and situations as this one but I want to believe that Stepmothers like Andi actually speak up and not tiptoe around their own homes.
I want to believe that Emily as spiteful as she was can open her eyes and try to change. Towards the last few pages we see some growth and I feel it was a long fought battle that took entirely too long to reach. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad it ended up the way it did but it was just so full of drama and stress that it was so depressing to get through. One thing feel the author needs to be commended for was switching POV's from Andi to Emily the switch was definitely something I felt.
You could just tell you were reading a teens thoughts and emotions they were so completely different and childlike that it was like I was almost a teen again myself. Pretty amazing. I was frustrated throughout the entirety of this novel. Nov 28, Lisa rated it liked it Shelves: family-drama.
This story was entirely different from Jemima J which I remember as being light-hearted and humorous.
In Another Piece of My Heart, Andi is a forty-something married to a man named Ethan who has two daughters from previous relationship. While Andi loves Ethan and has developed a mother-daughter relationship with his youngest, Sophia, Ethan's elder daughter Emily threaten to ruin her relationship with Ethan. Emily resents Andi's place in her father's life and appears to have resolved to make Andi's life miserable by throwing tantrums and manipulating her father into feeling so guilty for his second marriage that he consistently gives into Emily's demands. Andi tries to be patient but, as Emily grows increasingly out of control and Ethan fails to intervene, Andi must make a difficult decision.
Does she leave the man she loves and the hope of having a baby of her own to find peace in her own home or does she stay and continue to face Emily's increasingly erratic and destructive behavior, feeling like a prisoner in her own home?
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While reading, I felt my toes curl and my heart race with anger and frustration. Readers looking for a light beach read will not find it here; rather this story is bibliotherapy for those exploring the dark side of blended families.
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The writing is strong enough for readers to have a physical reaction to events in the story, however midway through the point of view begins to fluctuate and the transition between characters is awkward at times. Having access to multiple characters' experiences and points of view does serve to accentuate the fact that there are at least two sides to every story and arguments are not black and white. Jane Green certainly understands perspective and allows readers to experience differing points of view in order to take their own place in the story's conflict. Well written and enjoyable but tough on the emotions.
Readers looking for a light, beachy read to take the edge off of real life will not find it here. Fans of drama will revel in the emotional roller coaster created by the family saga in Another Piece of My Heart. Apr 08, Christina rated it it was ok Shelves: never-again.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I tried, I really, really did. I had to put it down about two-hundred pages in. I did skim to read the end, and wasn't all that surprised by the outcome. I've never read Jane Green, and the first twenty pages really grabbed me, so I was horribly disappointed when I just couldn't finish it.