Married at 22 and pregnant with twins, Stephanie never imagined she would find herself re-entering the mysterious, awkward world of dating. But after her husband leaves her for another woman and she has their children alone, our fearless narrator discovers an inner strength — and, many months later, puts herself back out there to find a new love. And preferably one without a mullet.
Meeting Mr. Wrong: The Romantic Misadventures of a Southern Belle is Stephanie’s short, fun look at trying to find true love while experimenting with online dating via Yahoo! Personals — and its cast of characters — starting in 1999. Despite a friend’s warning that the Internet is “full of axe murderers” who surely want to kill she and her children dead, Stephanie gamely sifts through e-mails from men pledging to love she and her children for the rest of her life to find someone who, you know, might be tolerable. Among many others, we meet Gil, the “birdbrain,” who probably adores his feathered friends more than he enjoys human contact, and Ben, the coworker who can barely remember Steph’s name, let alone be bothered to keep from vomiting in her general direction while drunk.
Stephanie’s incredibly strong, narrative and hilarious voice is what kept me compulsively reading this one. At 150 pages, this was a fast and enjoyable read that was almost like a compilation of awesome, hilarious blogs — and that’s not a bad thing. In fact, I loved that about it! It was punchy and to the point. The chapters were short and focused. There were several “laugh out loud” moments — especially when Stephanie’s mother was trying to convince her that if you want to find a man in the South, you sure as hell better like NASCAR — and I found myself chuckling at many other points, too! I could clearly hear her speaking voice through the entire book, and found her unique and innovative varieties of mild cursing hilarious! I know, I’m terrible. But we share the same sense of humor. And as a woman growing up in and out of the South, I felt like I had an extra appreciation for it.
A fast, fun and ultimately hopeful read for anyone who loves dating horror stories — or for anyone looking for a laugh and “thank God that wasn’t me!” moments. And does Stephanie’s story have a happy ending? Grab this one and get to reading!
4 out of 5!