Waiting for Tom Hanks
Written by: Kerry Winfrey
Read by: Rachel L. Jacobs
8 Hours and 33 Minutes
Penguin Random House Audio: Imprint: Penguin Audio
Genre: Fiction – Romance – Romantic Comedy
Release Date: June 11, 2019
A rom-com-obsessed romantic waiting for her perfect leading man learns that life doesn’t always go according to a script in this delightfully charming and funny novel.
Annie Cassidy dreams of being the next Nora Ephron. She spends her days writing screenplays, rewatching Sleepless in Seattle, and waiting for her movie-perfect meet-cute. If she could just find her own Tom Hanks—a man who’s sweet, sensitive, and possibly owns a houseboat—her problems would disappear and her life would be perfect. But Tom Hanks is nowhere in sight.
When a movie starts filming in her neighborhood and Annie gets a job on set, it seems like a sign. Then Annie meets the lead actor, Drew Danforth, a cocky prankster who couldn’t be less like Tom Hanks if he tried. Their meet-cute is more of a meet-fail, but soon Annie finds herself sharing some classic rom-com moments with Drew. Her Tom Hanks can’t be an actor who’s leaving town in a matter of days…can he? https://www.penguinrandomhouseaudio.com/book/602675/waiting-for-tom-hanks/
I voluntarily reviewed an advance reader’s copy of this book. No remuneration was exchanged and all opinions presented herein are my own except as noted.
Annie and her mother were huge fans of romantic comedy movies of the Nora Ephron variety. Annie’s dad died when she was a baby and her mother died when Annie was in her teens. She gets a degree in film, but lives with her nerdy uncle in Columbus, Ohio. Annie is a freelance internet writer specializing in pieces like “Five Ways to Unclog Your Toilet.” Annie drinks a lot of coffee at the local shop where her best friend works. When a movie comes to her neighborhood to film, her uncle calls the director, his college roommate and gets Annie a job as his PA. Of course, the biggest part of this story is that, through the nostalgic memories of watching romantic comedies with her mother, and the legend of her parent’s relationship, Annie is waiting for that perfect rom-com hero, you know Tom Hanks.
In the title it says “Waiting,” that’s distinct from”searching;” Annie doesn’t search for her perfect man, she expects to just meet him.
The folly of this is two-fold: Tom Hanks is not a character, and the perfect rom-com hero doesn’t exist. Granted, it’s a lovely idea, but it’s an ideal no man could achieve. Further, the plot in a rom-com also doesn’t really exist — not until this book (which is, of course, a rom-com novel). Additionally, by waiting for Tom Hanks, she keeps herself unattached from a deep love, she doesn’t twant to risk losing her true love her mother did. In the title it says “Waiting,” that’s distinct from”searching;” Annie doesn’t search for her perfect man, she expects to just meet him.
So, we know that Annie is going to have to grow up, move past fiction, grow up, screw-up, forgive and be forgiven. She has three chances just in this book.
The obstacles she encounters address a couple of amusing routes: not settling, realizing that perfect on paper doesn’t mean perfect, and our parents, dead or living, are not saints and don’t usually share everything with their kids. Annie is a bit of a whiny brat: “Rom-Com blah blah blah,” “I want Tom Hanks or nobody.” Her uncle is like a lot of nerds, quiet, caring, unmeddling, friendly, wise. Drew, it’s obvious is a really nice guy. Annie can’t see past Nora Ephron’s nose.
It’s a bit naive, but it does take care of a lot of fine points some authors might skip. The narration is lovely with Jacobs reading her part with bubbly, but wry, exuberance. It’s an enjoyable, coming of age, new adult story, perfect to lose yourself in while doing mundane chores, driving, on a plane, etc.