Book Reviews

[Review] Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke’s The Status of All Things

You don't want to look back on your life with someone, and compare it to a comfortable sweater. You deserve better.

The fact that Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke are best friends that write together is so intriguing to me. When you considers movies and tv shows, writing with other people is┬ánothing, but,┬áin a mostly text-based project, it’s almost a rarity. Like the idea of two creative minds writing a story together sounds like it would be great, but seems like it would cause issues because creatives can be territorial. I guess when plagiarism is a valid fear, one just doesn’t want to tempt fate. Thankfully, it worked out for these two.

In The Status of All Things, Kate gains the power to make her life mirror her Facebook statuses after her fiance’ (WordPress won’t let me insert the correct e) dumps her at their rehearsal dinner. So, of course, the first thing she does is go back in time to about a month before the wedding. To figure out what went wrong. Right.

The moment Kate figured out that she went back in time, my first thought was: “Cool, let’s end this relationship, and split up all of your shared assets.” I figured if her fiance’, Max, had made up his mind to leave her, then there was no point in trying to get him to stay. However, I forgot that we normally do not think that way so soon after a breakup. And so, I spent majority of the book going, “Girl, let that go”.

Don’t get me wrong, this was a really good book, and I’m happy that I stumbled upon it at a time when my boyfriend and I are talking about marriage. I think that a lot of people will identify with Kate despite cringing their lives away when her wishes backfire on her. It’s almost cathartic, if you’ve been through a major breakup.

I like that this book makes you really think about the person you married/are marrying. Are you really happy, or are you just comfortable? That’s what you have to ask yourself. Are you letting bitterness about your ex from a previous relationship keep you from being happy? Is your spouse not giving you enough attention? Is there a deeper reason as to why your relationships never seem to work out? All of these are good questions brought up in this novel that we should ask ourselves.

I am making the conscious decision not to speak about my suspicions about Ruby, but I appreciated that she helped to try and steer Kate on the path to figuring herself out.

There’s no real villain in this story, unless you consider attraction a villain. It really makes use of the idea that “everything is not black and white”. You even feel sad for the “other woman”. I like that. It wasn’t her fault the first time, and Kate practically pushes her into the second time. It was an eventuality that ruined a friendship, but there’s no point in being bitter about it.

All in all, I think that this was a great book. It handled a lot of cliche situations in very surprising ways. I would recommend it to anyone who has ever been in a relationship, or even just compared themselves to their friends on Facebook. You don’t want to look back on your life with someone and compare it to a comfortable sweater. You deserve better.


  1. I like the comfortable sweater comparison. Don’t know if its from the book…but that is a very smart way to ask yourself a simple question


  2. I made it 5 chapters in and the drunkenness and crying was unbearable. for 5 whole chapters, all I could think was “did ever turn around and ask him how he felt about things” . I never heard anything from him.


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