Author: Phoebe Fox
Genre: Contemporary Romance
My Copy: ARC courtesy of Henery Press
Add to: Goodreads
Synopsis: Call Brook Ogden a matchmaker-in-reverse. Let others bring people together; Brook, licensed mental health counselor, picks up the pieces after things come apart. When her own therapy practice collapses, she maintains perfect control: landing on her feet with a weekly advice-to-the-lovelorn column and a successful consulting service as the Breakup Doctor: on call to help you shape up after you breakup.
But when her own relationship suddenly crumbles, Brook finds herself engaging in almost every bad-breakup behavior she preaches against. And worse, she starts a rebound relationship with the most inappropriate of men: a dangerously sexy bartender with anger-management issues—who also happens to be a former patient.
As her increasingly out-of-control behavior lands her at rock-bottom, Brook realizes you can’t always handle a messy breakup neatly—and that sometimes you can’t pull yourself together until you let yourself fall apart.
Move over Carrie Bradshaw, there’s a new expert on relationships and it’s Brook Odgen, aka The Breakup Doctor.
As for character development, it’s a bit weak. We get to know our main character, Brook very well. Immediately we’re informed about her job situation and the status of her love life. She’s a bit quirky in the sense that she tries not to make certain situations about her, but in the end somehow manages to do so (more about this later). In many ways, I can see Brook taking on her mother’s sense of being dramatic (her mother is an actress) without realizing it. Then there’s Sasha, Brook’s best friend since childhood. We don’t get to know Sasha very well and what do know about her is solely from Brook. We have a few secondary characters that play a vital role including the clients Brook takes on, a mysterious construction worker named Ben, a former patient of Brook’s named Chip, and Brook’s family.
As for narrative, it’s first person via Brook and it makes sense since she is the Breakup Doctor. Though, I admit, at times I had difficulty trusting her especially when she would give out advice and her own actions didn’t reflect what she preached. While I can appreciate the situations Fox puts Brook in to showcase her human side versus her mindset as a counselor, at times it felt as if Brook was a . I wanted to see the rational side of Brook take over and yet, it failed time and time again. Furthermore, certain situations were all about Brook when it had nothing to do with her. When her mother announces she’s going back to acting (well community theatre), Brook takes it personal. And when Sasha announces she’ll be interviewing Brook’s mother, Brook is baffled as to why. There are a few more situations that easily become all about Brook, but won’t go into any more details because I don’t want to spoil the book. Also, it’s pretty obvious Brook has yet to come to terms with the end of her engagement to Michael and side steps the issue whenever it’s brought up. I can’t wait to see what’s in store for Brook regarding this and hopefully Fox can shed some more light in a future book.
I debated heavily with the rating between a two, three, and quite possibly a four. Instead, I’ve given it a three because the writing is flawless and it’s a fast paced read. While I expected it to have more humor than it did, it still was an engaging read. It was easy to picture the situations, but most importantly, I can easily imagine this on the big screen one day. Overall, Phoebe Fox’s The Breakup Doctor was a satisfactory read. I’m a bit worried how Fox plans to carry on the series especially since it looks like Brook will be vying for the attention of two men. Although, I can’t help but think, we haven’t seen the last of Kendell and maybe we’ll be lucky enough to meet Michael himself.
If you’re a fan of chick lit, you’ll want to check out Phoebe Fox’s The Breakup Doctor. Otherwise, I suggest borrowing a copy from a friend or waiting until the second book in the series is published to read this.