Sundays at Tiffany’s, by James Patterson and Gabrielle Charbonnet

Cover ImageFinished 12-1-08, fiction, rating 3.5/5, pub. 2008

“Please don’t leave me, Michael.  I’m begging you.  You can’t – not now, not ever!  You don’t know how important you are to me!”

“You’ll see, Jane,” he promised her.  “You’ll forget me, and it won’t hurt tomorrow.  Besides, you said it yourself: Love means you can never be apart.  So we’ll never be apart, Jane, because Iove you so much.  I’ll always, always love you.”

And with those words, Michael began to fade out of the room, in imaginary friend-style…”     -Chapter 7

Jane was a lonely child with a successful but neglectful mother.  Jane’s imaginary friend, Michael, gave her friendship and love before he had to leave her on her 9th birthday.  Fast forward 23 years and Jane has never forgotten Michael, achieving her own success by putting their story on the Broadway stage.  Even with this success she is still a lonely girl who never feels good enough.  Michael is between assignments and sees Jane on the New York streets and decides to follow her.  Michael is shocked to find out that Jane remembers him, something that has never happened before.

This is a fast read (I finished it in a day) and one that will open your imagination.  Who doesn’t want to have an imaginary friend whose sole purpose is to make them happy?  I was prepared to put my disbelief out in the snow while I cozied up to a lighthearted read.  It did tickle my imagination in a light, if not superficial way.  Michael was the perfect man and Jane was a normal girl who had never stopped loving him.  I even got past the fact that somehow Michael never aged, so when he was friends with an 8 year old girl he was the same age as when he fell in love with the same girl 23 years later.

The ending ruined much of the magic, for me at least.  I won’t ruin it for you, but I was disappointed because it felt lazy.  It could have been powerful or poignant, but it was…boring and short on explanation.  I liked the book and maybe not everyone will have a problem with the ending.  Total romantics will love it.  I consider myself more of a romantic realist, so I was a bit disappointed.  Overall it was a fun read with lots of potential, but one I’ve already rewritten in my head a half dozen ways and liked better!