3 reviews

by Rainbow Rowell

Published: 2014-07-08
Hardcover : 320 pages
5 members reading this now
12 clubs reading this now
8 members have read this book
Recommended to book clubs by 1 of 3 members

A New York Times Best Seller! Goodreads Choice Award Winner for Best Fiction of 2014! An Indie Next Pick!

From New York Times bestselling author of Eleanor & Park and Fangirl, Rainbow Rowell, comes a hilarious, heart-wrenching take on love, marriage, and magic phones.

Georgie McCool knows ...

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A New York Times Best Seller! Goodreads Choice Award Winner for Best Fiction of 2014! An Indie Next Pick!

From New York Times bestselling author of Eleanor & Park and Fangirl, Rainbow Rowell, comes a hilarious, heart-wrenching take on love, marriage, and magic phones.

Georgie McCool knows her marriage is in trouble. That it's been in trouble for a long time. She still loves her husband, Neal, and Neal still loves her, deeply-but that almost seems beside the point now.
Maybe that was always beside the point.

Two days before they're supposed to visit Neal's family in Omaha for Christmas, Georgie tells Neal that she can't go. She's a TV writer, and something's come up on her show; she has to stay in Los Angeles. She knows that Neal will be upset with her-Neal is always a little upset with Georgie-but she doesn't expect to him to pack up the kids and go without her.

When her husband and the kids leave for the airport, Georgie wonders if she's finally done it. If she's ruined everything.

That night, Georgie discovers a way to communicate with Neal in the past. It's not time travel, not exactly, but she feels like she's been given an opportunity to fix her marriage before it starts. . . .

Is that what she's supposed to do?

Or would Georgie and Neal be better off if their marriage never happened?

Editorial Review

An Amazon Best Book of the Month, July 2014: In Landline, Rainbow Rowell once again shares her insightful, funny perspective on love and relationships, this time delving into a marriage floundering in the wake of kids, careers, and the daily grind. Georgie and Neal have been married for fifteen years and have two young girls who Neal cares for while Georgie works as a sitcom writer. When Georgie skips the family trip to her in-laws in Omaha for Christmas and the rest of her family goes without her, she realizes that maybe her marriage is going too. When a line to the past (literally) gives Georgie a chance to re-live an earlier pivotal moment in their relationship, she sees it as an opportunity to figure out if she and Neal should have been together in the first place. Landline is a deeply resonant story about being willing to go all in--at the start or after being together for many years--for the kind of love that makes â??everything else just scenery.â?? --Seira Wilson


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Discussion Questions

1. What would you do if you found a magic phone that
called into the past? Who would you call? Is there
something in your life you’d try to fix?

2. Do you think Georgie is supposed to use the phone to
fix her marriage? Is her marriage broken?

3. Was it fair of Neal to take the girls to Omaha for
Christmas without Georgie? Do you think his frustration
with her was justified?

4. Do you blame Georgie for not going to Omaha with
her family? For being so passionate about her career?
Would you feel differently if the roles were reversed
and it was Neal putting his career first?

5. Georgie doesn’t want to be home alone in her empty
house while Neal and the girls are gone. How does being
back in her childhood home with her mom, sister, and
stepdad affect the way Georgie feels and behaves?
How do each of these characters help her work
through her feelings for Neal?

6. Georgie can never get in touch with Neal on his cell
phone. Do you have people in your life who–even in
this age of ubiquitous cell phones–never pick up their
phone or answer their texts? Do you resend it? Or do
you wish you could be more like them?

7. In many ways Seth is a better match for Georgie. Do
you think they should have ended up together? What
is it about Neal that attracts Georgie? What is it about
Georgie that Neal falls in love with? Do you think they
are a good match?

8. Was it wrong for Seth to tell Georgie he loves her? Or
should he have kept that to himself? Do you believe him?

9. Why do you think Rainbow chose to include pugs in
this novel? How does the pug scene in the laundry room
relate to Georgie’s own life? Does that scene affect what
Georgie does next?

10. Do you think Georgie regrets her career choices? Do you
think women today are asked to make harder choices
when it comes to family and their careers than men are?

11. Are you old enough to remember talking on a landline?
Or a rotary phone? What memories did this book bring
back? What’s different about talking on a landline
compared to a cell phone? How is that reflected in the

12. This is how Georgie describes marriage and love:
It’s more like you meet someone, and you fall in love,
and you hope that that person is the one—and then at
some point, you have to put down your chips. You just
have to make a commitment and hope that you’re right.
Do you think she’s right? Do you think Rainbow agrees
with Georgie?

13. Neal says of love, “Maybe there’s no such thing as
enough.” What does he mean? And do you agree?

14. If Georgie is right, Neal already took part in all of their
phone calls as a younger man. How did that affect his
understanding of their marriage?

15. What do you think happens at the end of the story?
Does Georgie continue to work with Seth on her new
show? What would you do? What does she owe Neal in
this situation? What does she owe herself?

16. Does this book have a happy ending?

Notes From the Author to the Bookclub

No notes at this time.

Book Club Recommendations

Member Reviews

Overall rating:
by Gail G. (see profile) 03/15/19


by Jay S. (see profile) 10/02/18

by Bren S. (see profile) 04/29/16

  "Landline"by Bobbi L. (see profile) 12/17/15

Good read. Light and humorous

  "What's Up with the Phone?"by Pam H. (see profile) 09/23/15

Our club did not like the book at all. We were curious to read something by Rainbow Rowell, but this was not the one! Went round and round without much point, and the insertion of this magical phone element... (read more)

  "Landline"by susan w. (see profile) 08/26/15

The book had a lot of potential but fell flat. Georgie is annoying and Neal is a drip. I had high expectations for this book but was very disappointed.

  "An interesting read"by Laura d. (see profile) 04/20/15

There isn't a lot of depth for book club discussion, but we did talk for quite a while about what we thought of various decisions made in the book-- there was a wider variety of responses than I expected.... (read more)

by Leigh D. (see profile) 02/25/15

  "The book was written for adults, but it might be more appropriate as a crossover from YA."by Gail R. (see profile) 07/26/14

Landline, Rainbow Rowell, read by Rebecca Loman
Georgie McCool and Neal are married. . From the first time they saw each other, it was kismet. They are a couple in their late thirties, marr
... (read more)

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