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Diary of a Dieting Madhouse - The Novel.

Diary of a Dieting Madhouse - The Novel

Paige Singleton

JPS Publishing Company

0966492498 $3.99 fkmr1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1389377941&sr=8-2-fkmr1&keywords=Diary+of+a+Dating+Madhous e

Diary of a Dieting Madhouse - The Novel centers around Rowan Faine, who compulsively overeats to compensate for the shambles her life has become when her parents' death in a car accident left her responsible for her unruly younger sister and saddled with a job that offers free food to its employees. Constantly challenged by management issues with her sister and with the attorneys she works for, Rowan thinks she is coping well - until a brash new young attorney throws her off-balance.

Grey Faris and Rowan clash repeatedly, and it doesn't help that she overhears him call her 'fat'. When she embarks on a weight-loss program (by converting to a vegan diet) with the aid of her best friend and coworker Madelyn, the dynamics of her relationship with Grey change; but surprisingly, it's not because of her weight loss alone.

To call Diary of a Dieting Madhouse-The Novel a 'romance' would do it a vast injustice: there's a host of plots and subplots going on that create far more than one-dimensional protagonists or purposes, and romance is only one facet of a comedy of errors that entwines Rowan and her circle.

For one thing, the law firm setting is all too realistic (my sister worked in a law firm for years: the stories related here mirror well how a law firm operates behind the scenes.) Rowan's circle of interests and experiences revolves around her job, which serves as an impetus for change only when a new 'wild card' is introduced to the staff.

For another, the protagonists constantly teach each other. Even adversity breeds admiration, eventually - and for Rowan, the interplay between law firm members is actually a blessing as it keeps her from living a complacent life or becoming overly tied down to her rebellious younger sister's constant tests of power.

Rowan's observations of her world are biting and to the point: "Colin epitomized everything she disliked about lawyers. Disorganized and unwilling to utilize modern technology, he created arbitrary deadlines to make himself appear important. Although not very bright, he was in a position of power." And they reflect her ability to cut through the chase and perceive underlying motivations, attitudes, and personas in those around her.

The point of romance is that the participants teach each other about love, life, and different perspectives. Rowan's playfulness eventually reaches out to Grey and in Hawaii he discovers that perhaps his life hasn't been everything he's wanted: "The time had gone by so quickly. He realized that for the first time in a long time, he was actually having fun. Most of his life had been spent going to school, working or being a parent to his sister. He hadn't had much of a chance to be silly and enjoy himself, no obligations or strings."

For Rowan, it's the revelation that her attitudes toward men in general are changing, sparked by close encounters with one of the feistiest she's met, Grey. When Grey proves himself to be a kind, generous man underneath the aggressive persona, Rowan finally is able to open up to the possibilities of not just the relationship, but the wider world.

From dieting to transformed worldviews under one cover? Surely that takes romance, chutzpah and a unique protagonist who doesn't 'settle' for the mundane.

That is the spark and life of Diary of a Dieting Madhouse, which neatly juxtaposes emails, story lines and memos to sprinkle delight and change throughout its evolving plot. Fans of food, friendships, and love will find this a heart-warming tale of transformation.
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Title Annotation:Donovan's Bookshelf
Publication:MBR Bookwatch
Article Type:Book review
Date:Feb 1, 2014
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