Molly Malahan, otherwise known as Little Miss Sunshine, has won a week-long trip to Mauritius. On the plane, Molly is seated next to Adam, gorgeous but grumpy. Though she tries her best, she simply can’ get him to laugh or even smile.
Once on the island, it seems that Adam is everywhere Molly goes. They bicker and argue from the beach to the markets and back. Why, Molly wonders, is Adam following her everywhere when he doesn’t even like her?
It isn’t until they are back at home in Australia that Molly discovers the truth about Adam and about herself.
Theme of the Book
Stuck with Me is a book about life and love and, more importantly, about anxiety and the choices we all make.
What I Liked About the Story
The author succeeded to do in Stuck with Me, was bringing the character of Molly to life. Once the characters arrive at their destination, the author seems to tone Molly’s character down a bit and make her much more human. We see Molly as an open, friendly person who has her own troubles and grief but who chooses to be happy.
The fact that Molly has her own anxieties gave both her character and the book more depth than is found in the usual romance. The author’s treatment of Molly’s mother’s mental problems was sensitive and true-to-life. It is Molly’s responsibility for her mother that makes her more than the typical romantic heroine concerned only with the man in her life. Molly is torn between her attraction to Adam and her feelings of guilt and fear about abandoning her mother. This was well done by the author who managed to inject a serious topic into a romantic comedy without losing either the romance or the comedy itself.
Adam is the typical romantic hero: tall, dark, handsome, a bit secretive. The best part of his character is his three sisters who bring in a note of true comedy.
Readers will enjoy the descriptions of Mauritius. The author has enlivened the book with her pictures of the sun, sand, markets, and people of the island. The scenes of Molly and Adam in the marketplace were particularly well written.
What I Didn’t Like About the Story
During the first scene in Stuck with Me, Molly is the seat-mate from hell. She is constantly “teasing” or interrupting Adam who, in his curmudgeonly pose, reacts exactly the way many passengers would. At this point in the story, Molly is not a likeable character. It is also odd that, despite her sociability, Molly makes no friends during her holiday except for Samantha, who is hardly present in the story. A friendly, open character like Molly should have had plenty of company and would certainly not be stuck with Adam. This made the whole situation quite artificial.
The book has only two characters that mean anything to the story. Aside from Molly and Adam, other characters are there only to fulfill the obligatory roles of best friend/eccentric family/wise advisor. Instead of the long and sometimes tiresome back and forth between Molly and Adam, it would have been nice to learn more about the other characters.
Stuck with Me is a very well-written romance with a touch of dark realism. Romance fans should love the book for its love story, its exotic locations, and its ability to fulfill all the requirements of fictional romance.