Review: Two Years, No Rain by Shawn Klomparens

coverTwo Years, No Rain by Shawn Klomparens is a fitting book for me to review right now, as the first rainstorm of the year blew through today.  After digging out the umbrellas and dusting off the boots it occurred to me that the kids probably wouldn’t fit into any of their rain gear.  Yes, it has been that long since we’ve had rain.  I can’t remember the last time we had measurable rainfall in Southern California, but it was probably back in March or April.

The weather is used as a metaphor in Two Years, No Rain.  Andy Dunne is a weatherman on the radio but his job is a bit dull and predictable, what with the ever-present sunshine and mild temps in San Diego County.  Not only has the climate been dry; Andy’s career and personal life have gone through a long drought as well.  But the storm clouds of change are looming on the horizon…

Andy’s marriage has failed after his wife cheated on him repeatedly.   Even so, he feels responsible because he hasn’t been an attentive husband.  For the last two years he’s been pining away for a married colleague, Hillary.  Late night phone calls with wine glasses in hand (drunk dialing?) and frequent texting (“What are you wearing?”) are as far as the relationship has gone, but there’s an emotional investment here that he can’t deny.

Hillary sets him up on an interview for a new children’s TV show similar to Blues Clues and he lands the job.  He starts a workout regime in order to prepare for his on-air gig and within weeks he looks and feels better than ever and is being recognized whenever he goes out, and not just by kids.  Hot young moms all over town want to buy him a drink or get his autograph.  He likes the attention to a point but is mostly uninterested and wants to be with Hillary.  He’s waited for her (and the rain) for a very long time.

Hillary’s husband has taken notice of all the messages between them and tells Andy to back off.  The indignant Hillary tells her husband she can be friends with whoever she wants, and soon Andy and Hillary have regular lunch dates and are getting cozier and cozier.  However Hillary is inconsistent (come here.. go away.. come here.. go away) and Andy is confused.  Hillary’s husband is neglectful and often absent, making her open to Andy’s attentions at times but also leaving her with guilt over their relationship.

Andy drinks too much, makes some poor choices, gets really angry,  holds a grudge,   passes out, falls down, ignores health warnings, finds success, carries on with a married woman, and buries his true feelings.  He’s also sweet, wounded, vulnerable, a good uncle, and a nice guy.  In other words, he’s a very realistic and relatable character.

I liked Andy and hoped he would figure everything out, but he also frustrated me.  He wasn’t exactly a man of action.  He was rather passive and just let things happen to him,.  I wanted him to be more of a take charge guy; more John Wayne, less.. I don’t know.  I’m trying to think of an actor that’s kind of bland.   He had a certain charm, especially in the scenes with his niece, and I did like him, but I was really waiting for him to be a more manly man.  But that was not to be.

I enjoyed Two Years, No Rain.  It was unusual reading a chick-lit style book with a guy as the main character.  That was a first for me and it was a refreshing change of pace. There were funny moments, good dialogue, and unusual situations.  If you like chick lit, but are looking for something a little different,  give this one a try!

A bunch of us discussed this book over the summer.  Check out this post to see the comments.  You can visit the author’s website and learn more about his work HERE.

14 Responses

  1. Got this in the mail (unexpectedly) and started to read it only to find myself not really drawn into the storyline. So it has sat on my TBR pile for awhile. After reading your review I might have to give it another try.

  2. Lisa, I’m glad you enjoyed Two Years, No Rain. As you may recall, I reviewed it a short while ago.

    I think the lead character Andy was in the process of healing and reinventing (I hate that word but it fits here) himself in the book–he wasn’t yet at the point of “taking charge”, although he was on the way.

    Enjoyed reading your review! 🙂

  3. We had major rain up here, complete with power outages. Although why can’t the power go out when I’m at work, instead of at home trying to read??

    So is this an example of dick lit? (Which, by the way, I consider just as awful a term as chick lit.)

  4. Rain storms give me a good excuse to curl up and do nothing. I’m needing one of those days! I love the title of this book, but the jury is out on whether I put it on my list or not. I don’t like weak characters, they frustrate me.

    Excellent point, softdrink, I think this indeed IS dick lit.

  5. It has rained almost every other day here this year. Everything is molded and mossed over. It’s nuts! Good thing I love rainy days.

    I found Goldengrove the other day at my local used bookstore so I’m excited about starting it. I hope you like Catching Fire! We’ll have to wait FOREVER until the next one. What a bummer. : (

  6. I liked this book and like you, loved that the main character for once, was a man.

  7. Great review Lisa. I really enjoyed this book. It was different reading about a guy but that’s what I liked about it.

  8. I am glad that you liked this book. I read it a few months ago and participated in the blog tour and discussion, and think that Andy was a great character, though he was a little soft. I really liked that it had some of the same characteristics as chick lit, but from a dude’s perspective. I hope to see more books in this style in the future. Great review!

  9. I was cheering for Andy and really liked the first 2/3rds of this book. But then I felt like Klomparens couldn’t figure out how to wrap everything up. Some things were just left hanging.

  10. i read this book a while back, and like you (and kathy) enjoyed a male main character telling a seemingly chick-lit-ish type of book!

    ps. better rain than snow–we had some of that last week in north jersey!!!! (luckily i live along the coast and was spared…but my sister had snow. )

  11. I like the idea of a chic-lit book where the main character is a man, that’s a nice change and this man sounds like a pretty nice guy. I enjoyed your review very much. Thank you.
    I cannot believe you get that little rain there! That’s amazing, wow! I might have to move! :o)

  12. Finally got my Sunday Salon post up! I didn’t know you cared! (hee hee).


  13. Looks like a great book. Love curling up to a good book while it is raining outside. Forecast is calling for rain tomorrow. Maybe I will finish my latest favorite chic lit book, .. “Mystic in a Minivan” by Kristen White. Am getting some great tips on how to improve myself (spiritually). Sounds wonderful doesn’t it (book, rain, and enlightenment)! Can’t wait!

  14. I enjoyed TWO YEARS, NO RAIN also.

    Posted reviews on various book sites.

    It was a nice change from other books I had been reading.

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