Saturday, 23 November 2013

REVIEW: 'Revenge Wears Prada' by Lauren Weisberger

Despite having studied the classics, I still have a penchant for 'chick lit'. I love indulging in a novel which is set in London of New York, starring fabulous young women, a couple of rotten but dashingly attractive men, and the unsuspecting heartthrob who reveals himself at the end after pages of heartbreak, glamorous events and designer heels.

Lauren Weisberger's books were my first step into this 'Carrie Bradshaw-eqsue' world. I started reading Chasing Harry Winston and Everyone Worth Knowing before I picked up The Devil Wears Prada. The books, whilst not the most mentally stimulating, fed my need for gossip-filled fiction; the glamour, the grown-up issues, the romance. It was a sparkly, drama filled life which I could escape to after school, or on my breaks from studying at university. The Devil Wears Prada became one of my favourite books, and subsequently one of my favourite films.

When I heard there was to be a sequel, I just had to get my hands on it. I waited until my degree had finished, and after I'd finished 'The Perks of Being a Wallflower' I leapt straight into this book!

Revenge Wears Prada picks up on Andy's life ten years after that incident in Paris with the she-devil herself, Miranda Priestly. The dramatic exit left the readers convinced that Miranda had been kicked out of Andy's life for good. Except that isn't the case, and now she's back to allegedly wreak havoc on Andy's life once again, like any self-respecting villain.

Ten years later, Andy is doing well for herself. In typical Chick-Lit fashion, she's got the man, the job and the wedding - or so it seems. Of course, the path is never smooth running, and after a few slow pages I was introduced to the sort of drama that only seems to happen in New York.

The book was smooth running, in the sense that I didn't feel there were any major page-turning events. Yes, as I just said, there is drama - but I didn't feel the same pace and tension as I did in the first book - or even in the film. I was able to leave the book for a few days before continuing, unlike other books which I felt the need to be reading constantly, whenever I had a free moment!

Miranda herself doesn't seem to have the same presence. With it's title, I expected huge episodes of screaming, fights and backstabbing which would turn the central character's lives upside down, a la Devil Wears Prada. Miranda's presence is not as devilish as I had hoped, and although she is extremely difficult and, truthfully, a bit of a bitch, I don't think she's quite the menace the title leads you to believe. Here, Miranda doesn't work alone.

Now, don't get me wrong. I enjoyed the book and look forward to re-reading it in time. It's easy going, enjoyable and a great way to get stuck into a book which isn't too heavy on the brain. However, it is very much a sequel, and would not do as well if it was a stand-alone tale.

I really recommend it if you enjoy 'Chick Lit' which is enjoyable albeit a little predictable, but if you expect fireworks and drama to rival Weisberger's first account of Andy's life, you might be a little disappointed.


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