Another chick-lit! But don’t judge me please – I’m on holidays and just picked up a bunch of cheap, easy reads before I left.
Initially, I enjoyed the book – definitely in comparison to my last attempt at the genre – but on reflection I am not so keen….
Most of the story follows Anna, a history professor who, after being bullied all through high school for her weight and looks, is still coming to terms with her new-found attractiveness in her thirties. She attends her high school reunion in an attempt to gain some sort of closure and is hurt when no one recognises or remembers her. As a further humiliation, she is then forced to work with the worst of the bullies, James Fraser, on a museum exhibition.
However, we are also privy to James’ narrative, discovering that his perfect life is falling apart. We see the trajectory of their friendship from both sides in addition to the issues affecting its progress.
Anna is also a Mills and Boon tragic – according to the back of the book, at least…. – which makes for the clichéd romantic scenes which generally come with mockeries of the genre.
It was incredibly predictable and very clichéd but also very funny. Although not a big fan of the genre, I can acknowledge that McFarlane writes well and there are quite a number of humorous moments, especially the scenes where Anna is trying internet dating. I liked the prose but thought it lacked character development – the women were written decently but the men were stereotyper and boring.
While I won’t be trying chick-lit rom-com stories again for a while, this was an easy holiday read and kept me entertained on the aeroplane. If you are looking for something stimulating, don’t try this – I probably recommend steering clear of the genre altogether. But, for an easy holiday read it does nicely. Just don’t think about it too much afterwards….