Beginner's Greek - James Collins I read a review that described this book as "cinematic," and assumed that the reviewer felt that way because the plot of this book starts out so similar to the movie "Serendipity" -- a movie I rather enjoyed. The thing is, though, that if this were a movie, I probably would have walked out of the theater. Peter plays much the same role as John Cusack, a man who meets a woman named Holly on a flight from New York to LA. They hit it off and agree to get together once they're in LA. Poor Peter loses her phone number and is left wondering what could have been.

That's the prologue of this 430-page novel. One would think that it would take at least a couple hundred pages for Peter and Holly's paths to cross again. But, no, that's not the case here. Peter is about to be married to another woman named Charlotte and it turns out that his womanizing best man is married to none other than Holly.

This is just the beginning of the ludicrous plot twists. By the time I decided I couldn't handle this book any longer, the best man had just gotten done having sex with Peter's new stepmother-in-law on the lawn of the reception hall and was killed by a bolt of lightning. Charlotte's aunt suggests that Peter go home with Holly on what should have been his wedding night so that he can be a comfort to his friend's grieving wife.

I suppose this was supposed to be a funny book, but I just didn't get it. I thought that these plot twists were absurd and not at all comical. If the intent was satirical, it flew over my head because it was so poorly executed. I might have been able to forgive Collins if the prose weren't so pathetic, but Collins' writing is trite and lifeless and I felt no empathy for the characters at all. What a disappointment.