The writing is what makes this story. My very favorite thing about the book is Aurora's love of language and how she focuses on the way people speak. It's kind of uneven in plotting, and all of Aurora's dates made me yawn. Most of the first part of the book is focused on her dating life. The end turns to Emma, who I found much more interesting but whose motives were harder to understand. The end, even though I knew what was coming, felt like an easy way out to tie up things up.
The domestic violence was strangely written, and I can only guess this is because McMurtry is a man. Not that I'm saying he is okay with it (though I really can't say either way), but he didn't make me feel like a (pregnant) woman just got punched in the mouth. Also, if it weren't mentioned repeatedly, you wouldn't even know Emma was pregnant. So maybe he was limited by simply not being a woman.
Still the writing is so easy to fall into, and as a native Houstonian, I loved every last reference to the region.