As a 22-year-old philosophy student at Sussex, Susannah’s life revolves around her studies and her relationship with her older boyfriend Jason. When a boy in her course catches her fancy, she’s suddenly pulled in two different directions, but instead of making a decision and choosing one over the other, she floats along and lets her philosophical musings convince her that making no decision is a decision in and of itself. When the situation hits the fan and Susannah finally has to look into herself and decide what she wants, she once again turns to modern-day philosophers to work through what she really wants for herself and her future.
There are things about this book that I liked. I did like that you get an introduction to philosophy and that you can see it applied; I also liked that Susannah grew up a bit throughout the course of the book. The writing style alternated between light chick-lit and deep philosophy, which was interesting. Beyond flowing hair for the men and disco, the book just didn’t give me much of a sense of the 1970s — with the exception of the feminist debate, especially over the issue of abortion, which felt very realistic and gave me a sense for how hard it would have been to figure out your role as a woman during that time.
However, for me, the plot was too much based in Susannah’s bedroom life, and the pace was a bit slow. Beyond that, I wanted her to stand on her own feet more, and even at the end when she finally made a choice, I still felt like she was being self-absorbed, which was frustrating for me. I think my main problem can be boiled down to the fact that I just could not relate very well to any of the characters, despite my appreciation for their struggles.
Rated: High for three-plus explicit sexual scenes and multiple uses of strong (“f-word”) and moderate language.