The One That Got Away by Carol Rosenfeld is a quirky book that’s unlike anything I’ve ever read before. With particularly sharp writing, it’s a general fiction book that’s perfect for when you’re ready to put down your romances and take a chance on something different.
Bambi “B.D.” Devine is a middle-aged bridal consultant who was the last one to figure out she’s a lesbian. When Bridget comes by to help her sister choose a wedding dress, B.D. is instantly smitten, convinced Bridget is the one for her. The only hitch is that Bridget is already involved with Natalie, her bitchy girlfriend who’s always hanging off the arm of the infamous author Maxine Huff.
The One That Got Away is told in the first person from B.D.’s perspective, following her early months of living as a lesbian. She pines for Bridget even as she pursues other relationships, and it’s through this lens that we see Bridget, her relationship with Natalie and her other social interactions. The title tells you everything you need to know about B.D. and Bridget, but I enjoyed their time on the page together.
The Writing Style
I know I said The One That Got Away is general fiction, but it almost has a literary fiction feel to it, and I can imagine being handed this book in a couple of my old undergrad lit classes. The writing style is excellent, with a thread of humour running throughout that kept me entertained. My favourite scene was probably when we see B.D. at a sex shop with Maxine; I won’t say more, but I laughed or smiled my way through it.
I’m a big fan of books, movies or tv shows that are quirky, and The One That Got Away perfectly scratched that itch. The characters are well done, the plot was interesting, and it’s kept me thinking about it for the week that’s passed since I finished it. I also love the cover, which perfectly suits the rest of the book.
I don’t think I’ve done the book justice in this review because I really don’t know how best to talk about it.
If you want to read something that’s more than a little different from your typical lesfic, pick up The One That Got Away.
Excerpt from The One That Got Away by Carol Rosenfeld
When I emerged from the dressing room, I found Maxine talking to a small, slender woman wearing a close-fitting leather jacket and leather pants.
“Yvette, this is Bambi Devine, otherwise known as B.D.”
“Bambi! How sweet.”
“You know, Bambi was a male deer,” I said. “My mother was a gender bender ahead of her time.” This, of course, was pure bravado. My mother had named me Bambi because she felt me kick during the fawn’s first appearance on the big screen. Fortunately, I’d had the sense to hold still while Thumper was on.
“Bambi, dear, would you like to come to a little party I’m having? I found this wonderful kneeler at a church rummage sale. Now that I’ve refinished it, I want to initiate it and formally integrate it into my dungeon.”
“Oh lord,” I said.
“That’s the spirit,”Maxine replied.
“Tell me some of your fantasies,” Yvette said. “I might be able to hook you up with someone who will help you act them out.”
“Well, I’d like to dress up as Alice in Wonderland and ride on a drag queen float in the Gay Pride parade,” I said.
“Yvette means sexual fantasies, B.D.,” Maxine said.
“Oh. In that case, maybe I’ll just watch what everyone else is doing, thanks.”
“So you like to watch?”
I felt myself blush. “When is the party?”
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Bits and Bobs
- ISBN number: 9781612940601
- Publisher: Bywater Books
Carol Rosenfeld Online
Note: I received a free review copy of The One That Got Away by Carol Rosenfeld. No money was exchanged for this review. I will always review books as honestly as possible and on occasion I refuse to review books.