{Bookworm Review & iStyle combo} Overnight Socialite

Image by Sasha H. Muradali. All Rights Reserved 2009.

by Jennifer Ortiz

A few weeks ago, an e-mail popped up in my inbox with a proposal to review this book for submission. It wasn’t an uncommon occurrence, but it has been a while since we at the LPB have accepted a submission for review. As you readers probably already know, there have been all sorts of changes going on for Sasha. I’ve been unusually quiet here for similar reasons. Writing my own book, finishing a book that I was hired to write, consulting, and being a mom has left me with little time to read – or at least to read as much as usual. I’ve been re-reading favorites so that I wouldn’t be annoyed with the interruptions. I’m the type that likes to sit down and devour a book, so having to stop in the midst of my savoring the text annoys the living daylights out of me.

But, here was this opportunity to read something that seemed lighthearted. I could see that this wasn’t going to be a Not That Kind of Girl or Locust and the Bird.

I was hesitant. I didn’t know what to expect. I’ve only begun reading “chick-lit” or “beach reads” in recent years, and it still doesn’t happen too often. However, after reading a bit about the book, I was intrigued. It seemed that the book could be one of the rare reads in the genre that I might enjoy. Plus, I couldn’t find my copy of Fitzgerald, which I took as a sign. It was time to read something new.

I sat down with it the first moment I had, and by the next day, I had finished it.

A good sign.

I enjoyed it, which is more than I can say for most books in the genre.

Summary:

Bridie Clark’s The Overnight Socialite is a retelling of Pygmalion. To those who have never read Shaw, Pygmalion is the play which My Fair Lady (the play and the film) is based upon. Retelling stories is not usually a wise idea; remakes often end up falling short of the original. In this case, it seems all the more challenging to have to live up to the original AND the previous remakes, both of which are veritable classics. In Clark’s case, retelling a classic proved that some stories never get old.

Impressions:

This isn’t to say that the book has reached the level of Shaw’s Pygmalion. It hasn’t, and I wouldn’t dream of making that a fair comparison. You almost never beat an original. So, readers, please keep that in mind. Clark’s adaptation falls into a different genre, so it is only fair to judge it as such. With that said, I recommend the book to lovers of chick lit. My only gripe is that I’m rather bored with the all too common scenario of an unsuspecting mid-western underdog pitted against the social climbing New Yorkers. I would’ve liked to have seen Clark pick a more original setting, but it wasn’t an inappropriate choice, either.

I happily read it straight through. It wasn’t overwritten. Nor, was it dumbed down. {Two of the mistakes I find too often in that genre.} Clark found the perfect level of humor and satire when approaching the ridiculousness that is the reality of the social set. I especially loved the Anna Wintour type editor and Lucy’s whacked-out mom. Should the book be made into film, I’m begging for Anna to spoof herself and Fran Drescher to play Lucy’s mom.

Rating: 5 out of 5

You’ll love it if you like: Devil Wears Prada, The Nanny Diaries, The Real Housewives series {meaning if you roll your eyes at them, but watch anyway.}

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Jenn Ortiz is a writer and social media consultant. She is a graduate of the University of Florida with degrees in History and Latin American Studies with hopes to pursue a PhD in Child Development. She believes there is beauty in everything around us; from the inside out, outside in. She currently runs {Bits of Beauty} a place you just feel good about and guest blogs for Design Tavern and Wishpot.

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