Reading Frenzy

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Chick lit or chick flicks?

"If love is the answer, could you please rephrase the question?" --Lily Tomlin

When my daughter was a toddler and I had lots of time as a sahm (yeah, right), a new neighbor gave me a bag full of Harlequin Romances. Even though I was a voracious reader, I'd never read one of these. And damn if I didn't sit and read every one of them, kicking myself after the first one. Because they were there. Because I tend to read anything at hand. Because I kept thinking they were going to get better. Chick lit really is a much better read than those old harlequins, but I think maybe I'd like them a lot better if their popularity hit about twenty years ago--give or take.

These days I don't read too much chick lit, once in awhile I pick up one that everyone raves about just to stay in the loop. Maybe I'm just too old for the genre, although I have to admit I loved
Good in Bed......But a close friend and the library director talked me into two this week that, well I wish had stayed on the shelf, or at least gone to someone totally addicted to the these books. On the other hand, I'm a sucker for chick flicks. Next time I'll wait for the movies.

The Undomestic Goddess by Sophia Kinsella

From Booklist:

"Samantha Sweeting, an ambitious lawyer on the fast track to becoming a partner at her prestigious law firm, is horrified to discover an overlooked memo on her desk that ends up costing a client 50 million pounds. In a daze, Samantha hops a train and finds herself in the country. She walks up to the first house she sees and knocks on the door, intending to inquire about the nearest hotel, but Trish Geiger mistakes her for the new housekeeper. Still in shock, Samantha decides to go along with Trish and her husband, Eddie's, mistake, despite the fact that she has no domestic skills. Happily, she is aided by the handsome gardener, Nathaniel. He helps her forget about her London law firm..."

Ummm, sure. I could see that happening.

Must Love Dogs

by Claire Cook

From BookPage:

"In an age of whiny novels about 30-something "singletons" whose sole goal in life seems to be snagging a decent man, Must Love Dogs is a refreshing antidote. Yes, 40-year-old Sarah Hurlihy is edging back into dating after a particularly nasty divorce, and yes, she wants to meet the right man. But author Claire Cook flips the same tired story upside down, serving up a hilariously original tale about dating and its place in a modern woman's life. "

Okay, a little older heroine, but the wacky family and the "settle for" ending lost me.


At 8:37 AM, Blogger Denise said...

Sophie Kinsella bugs the hell out of me. Seriously. I won't read her books. I can't. They make me physically ill. Stick with Weiner. ;-)

I'm sorry to hear your review of Must Love Dogs. I was interested in the fact that the chick was an "older woman" and thought there might be hope for this book. Should have known it would wind up just like all of the others.

I'm not anti-chick lit, I enjoy a wee bit of chick-lit just like I have been known to enjoy a stupid Harlequin. My problem with some chick lit is that it tries to be more than it is. Tries to shake the chick lit label when it should be proud of what it is. You don't see Harlequins trying to be something that they aren't, do you?

OK back to work. ;-)

At 12:09 PM, Anonymous adrienne said...

The thing that bugs me about SK's books is that the heroine invariably sucks at her job. Maybe she sucks at some other aspect of her life, too, but she definitely sucks at her job.

At 12:44 PM, Blogger sassymonkey said...

I often find myself attracted to chick-lit and then end up wondering why the heck I keep picking them up. And then if you do find a decent one they usually end up mucking it up with a sequel (like the sequel to Slightly Single- man it blew).

I'm like you. We had a box of Harlequins in our house when I was growing up. Most of them sucked but every now and then you'd find one that was good. I'd actually love to work for them (maybe someday...) but only if I can't edit cookbooks (total dream job and no idea how to get it...).

I think most chick lit books make better movies. They all tend to be structured around the romantic comedy formula. Although I'm prepared to hate In Her Shoes cause I don't like the casting.

At 6:57 PM, Blogger ~ nellenelle said...

My reading is finally picking up steam... it had left me for at least a couple of years, from when my ex started to get nasty through earlier this year...

now that work is going well, there seems to be more peace of mind, tranquility, etc. There is still the small matter of my children, but that won't dominate my thoughts, the walls are there. Anyway, it is nice to read again, too bad I bought the wrong Native Tongue, but oh, well this one was a nice read anyway (if a bit wacky.)


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