Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Toni Jordan – Addition (3/5)

Couple of covers:

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Genre: Contemporary romance

This is the book for you if you like:

- Books with a non too heavy view on mental illness (OCD)

Summary: (from author’s website)

Grace Lisa Vandenburg counts.

The letters in her name (19). The steps she takes every morning to the local café (920); the number of poppy seeds on her slice of orange cake, which dictates the number of bites she'll take to finish it. Grace counts everything, because numbers hold the world together. And she needs to keep an eye on how they're doing.

Seamus Joseph O'Reilly (also a 19, with the sexiest hands Grace has ever seen) thinks she might be better off without the counting. If she could hold down a job, say. Or open her kitchen cupboards without conducting an inventory, or make a sandwich containing an unknown number of sprouts.

Grace's problem is that Seamus doesn't count.

Her other problem is...he does.

Thoughts on covers:

The covers are: English version, American version, Dutch version, Australian version.

I like how different these covers are! I’m not a fan of the English version, mostly because the “A comedy that counts” subtitle irks me a little. The Australian version is pretty, but a bit too specific to one scene to fit on the book. I mostly prefer the Dutch version, and I don’t think it’s because that’s the version I have; I love how it shows so perfectly how everything has to be counted in Grace’s world.


Both the English title ‘Addition’ and the Dutch title (in translation ‘Everything counts’) do a pretty good job of mixing Grace’s obsession with counting and the complication of having Seamus in her life.


Grace is the main character and the one we get to know best; the story is told from her POV (first person, even). I like her; she knows how to not take herself too seriously, even if she takes all the numbers around her very seriously.

Seamus… He’s a good guy. I believe he really wants to help Grace, even if the help she eventually seeks on his insistence turns out to not be the one she needed.

Most of the other characters were a bit too broad for my taste, especially the shrink and the group leader. I couldn’t quite understand why Grace didn’t try and find someone who was better suited – or just plain a better therapist.


Melbourne, Australia. The setting doesn’t carry a lot of weight in the book though; it could have been set anywhere, anyplace.

General story:

First time I read this, I really, really loved it. In re-read, however, it doesn’t really hold up. I still like the story of Grace’s OCD; the scenes in the book in which she is scared to death and has to count, count, count to battle it are without a doubt the best parts of the book.

It’s mostly the middle of the book that I have problems with. Maybe that’s part of Jordan’s plan – after all, in the middle of the book Grace is just wandering, lost without a sense of self due to all the medications she’s on. I just can’t quite seem to get why no one told her how she was changing for the worse (especially Seamus) and why she didn’t care about the one who did – her little niece. This part just drags on, without much personality in the writing either, and that made it pretty hard to finish the book.

I’m also not a big fan of the writing style, especially in the sexual (fantasy) scenes. It feels like they’re just thrown in there to up the rating, instead of some actual character development.

Will I read other books from this author?

Probably not.

Overall rating: 3/5

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