The Village Bride of Beverly Hills

March 9, 2010 at 8:30 pm (Pop lit/Fiction lite, Romance) (, )

The Village Bride of Beverly Hills by Kavita Daswani

The Village Bride of Beverly Hills
GP Putnam’s Sons, 1st printing, 2004
271 pages
Genre: Chick lit

Book Report: Following an arranged marriage in India, Priya relocates to California, where her new husband’s family has made a life for themselves. They are an oasis of traditional values and practices in the hustle of LA, though Priya begins to suspect that her new sister-in-law may be rebelling. After a year with the Sohnis, Priya is astonished when her mother-in-law tells her that she must get a job since she hasn’t yet conceived. No woman in Priya’s family has ever worked before, but she dutifully obeys Mummy and goes job hunting. Laxmi is with Priya that day, for she walks into the Hollywood Insider offices just as the receptionist goes into labor. Priya’s responsible and hardworking air—as well as her lack of ambition to be an actress—makes her a natural for the position.

Soon Priya is working harder than ever, still doing all the cooking and housework at home for her husband in in-laws, and working at the Hollywood Insider. But she also must juggle her appearance and behavior, as her traditional costumes or the homely hand-me-downs approved by her in-laws look outlandish at work. Luckily, Shanisse, assistant to the movie coverage editor, soon takes Priya under her wing, helping her buy more work appropriate clothes and suggesting she change into them at the gym on her way to and from work.

To return the favor, Priya steps in for Shanisse in an important interview, and attracts the attention of several power players, including a Hollywood star, a powerful publicist, and the editor-in-chief and publisher of Hollywood Insider. When offered the chance of a lifetime as a special interviewer, Priya battles her conscience, but her ambition wins out, and soon she is interviewing stars and attending premieres. The influence she wields at work begins to make up for the lack of autonomy she has at home, but she also becomes more aware of the imbalances within her marriage. Her husband Sanjay is torn between his parents and his wife, and Priya always seems to come out the loser. Fed up with juggling tradition and ambition in hopes of achieving balance, Priya must choose whether to make peace or rebel.

This was an unusual find for me, because I actually found it browsing in the library. Like, in person. Most of the time, I read either books already in my own personal library, or I simply order books from the MCL, and Eli picks them up for me. (I love deliveries.) But we had to stop to pick up some books on hold while running errands one afternoon, so I went in and did a little browsing, coming out with a historical novel and some chick lit. Not bad. Read the rest of this entry »

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Love the One You’re With

July 24, 2009 at 3:11 am (Pop lit/Fiction lite, Romance) (, )

Love the One You're With by Emily Giffin

Love the One You're With by Emily Giffin

Love the One You’re With by Emily Giffin
St Martin’s Press, 1st edition, 2008
342 pages
Genre:
chick lit, romance, pop lit, fiction lite

Synopsis & Review: Ellen and Andy Graham are exactly one hundred days into their perfect marriage when Ellen has a chance encounter with her ex Leo, the One that Got Away. Flustered, she tries to go on as she was before, enjoying her perfect life, but she keeps finding her way back to Leo. Though he broke her heart eight years previous, Ellen can’t help but recall what they once had together–and what might have been. As Ellen struggles to adjust to a move from New York City to Atlanta, she questions her career, her marriage, her life, and her choices. will LtOYW disappoint? click here to find out!

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Baby Proof

July 24, 2009 at 1:14 am (Pop lit/Fiction lite, Romance) (, )

Baby Proof by Emily Giffin

Baby Proof by Emily Giffin

Baby Proof by Emily Giffin
St Martin’s Press, 1st edition, 2006
340 pages
Genre:
chick lit, romance, pop lit, fiction lite

Synopsis & Review: Claudia never liked playing with dolls, and when she grew up, she knew that she didn’t want kids. Just as she was resigning herself to the possibility that she’d never meet a partner who felt the same, along came Ben. Ben, who prized his freedom as much as she did, who wanted to travel and eat out, and live the high life with a partner. Agreeing on a child-free relationship, Claudia and Ben were married and lived happily ever after. At least, until Ben saw his friends having babies all around them and decided that he wanted one, too. click for whether Baby Proof was worth it

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Something Blue

July 24, 2009 at 12:40 am (Pop lit/Fiction lite, Romance) (, )

Something Blue by Emily Giffin

Something Blue by Emily Giffin

Something Blue by Emily Giffin
St Martin’s Press, 1st edition, 2005
338 pages
Genre:
chick lit, romance, pop lit, fiction lite

Synopsis & Review: Something Blue picks up where Something Borrowed left off: Darcy, Rachel, and Dex have all made their big reveals, leaving Dex and Rachel together, and Darcy with Marcus. Unfortunately for Darcy, her fairytale doesn’t work out this time. Marcus is patently uninterested in marriage and fatherhood, and gives Darcy her first dumping but good. Single and pregnant, Darcy is dumped by her other friends, too, as she begins to reap the shallowness she has sown. Desperate to start over, she flies to London to visit long-time friend Ethan, fantasizing about the lovely rich men she’ll meet in London, the ones who will take care of her and her baby forever. But when she tries to live out her fantasy of a glamorous life, Darcy is in for a rude awakening. click here for more about Something Blue

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Something Borrowed

July 23, 2009 at 3:05 am (Pop lit/Fiction lite, Romance) (, )

Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin

Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin

Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin
St Martin’s Griffin, 2nd printing, 2005
352 pages
Genre:
chick lit, romance, pop lit, fiction lite

Synopsis & Review: Rachel White celebrates her thirtieth birthday by having a big party with her BFF Darcy Rhone. Beautiful Darcy, a NYC PR person, plans a bash at a prominent nightspot, inviting Rachel’s friend—and her own—and celebrates even harder than the birthday girl herself, stepping naturally into the spotlight as she always has. But when Darcy has a little too much to drink and goes home early, studious good girl Rachel hooks up with Darcy’s fiancé Dex. Rachel spends the summer juggling her old BFF and her new love, working, spending weekends in the Hamptons, and oh, helping Darcy plan her wedding. To Dex. She also spends a lot of time moping about Dex, and how he’s not yet left Darcy for her, and will he leave Darcy for her, and what they’ll do when/if Darcy finds out, and so on.

I was sick for a few days, and Eli picked up a nice stack of books for me at the library, including the entire Emily Giffin oeuvre. I noticed the books when we were picking up sundries at Target last week and the titles Something borrowed and Something blue caught my eye—as anything wedding-related is wont to do right now. I am only human. I powered through all four Sunday through Wednesday, but for some periods of unconsciousness and vomiting on Tuesday (sorry, but it’s the truth!). The end result was that I overdosed on the books; I like fluff as much as the next person, but too much all at one is like eating three deep-fried Twinkies. click here for more about Something Borrowed

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