Set aside the magic phone, it’s apparent that Landline is love and the issue of it being sufficient. My first encounter with Rowell was E & P. The pair there had me enamored; mere mentions of a certain time had me happy. This experience I immediately followed up with Fangirl. There I found myself likewise enamored with the odd yet endearing people that story was filled with. Now, cute and odd as both those stories were, it was Attachments that clinched things. The one-two punch of pure nostalgia then pure ordinariness of the way they could all be is what worked for me.
There’s a little bit of the last in this; and despite the magic that could be that the phone in this served, Landline is less the about oddness that that represented AND more about the real connections, honest conversations, and deep-deep (as well as not-so-deep) musings they were all engaged in, particularly Georgie McCool.
Landline was all about Georgie: her life, her feelings on where her life was, how her life with Neal had turned up. Then there’s Neal as well: Neal of present and Neal of past…. both versions as seen through Georgie’s eyes. Only not just.
As in all her previous works, there were all those authentic connections made even more real with each moment one party had with another. There’s her link to her “partner.” (And no, it’s not Neal.) There’s that link she has with her family- each member remarkable one way or another- as well. But mostly, it’s that connection she had with Neal~ where they came from and where they were now… and mostly, whether “love” as her sister asked it sufficed.