Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Review: Pants on Fire by Maggie Alderson
Maggie Alderson's novel Pants on Fire has all the qualities of a successful chick lit novel - a great set of characters, funny one-liners and a gay best friend. What makes it even better is that it wisely sidesteps the clichés of the genre, and serves as a fast, funny, thought-provoking, warm read.
Pants on Fire is a story about a spunky London girl named Georgia Abbot who, after being cheated on by her lying boyfriend, moves to Sydney in hope of a fresh start. There she starts working for a glossy woman's magazine and starts living the crazy life of the Sydney glitterati. It is not soon before Georgia finds out that men can break your heart regardless of the location, and that she needs to take matters in her own hands.
What I thought was rather refreshing about Pants on Fire was its realistic feel. The book seemed like a hybrid of Sex and the City's coldness and Bridget Jones' idealism. The characters in the novel are downright crazy - Georgia's colleagues at the magazine are either alcoholics, drug addicts, nymphomaniacs or have severe eating disorders. The men in her life are not much different. But what Maggie Alderson managed to find at the bottom of all of them is heart, and that is exactly what makes the reader like this novel.
Although there are a couple of repetitive situations in the book, as well as some mildly pathetic moments, there is nothing bad enough for me not to recommend this book to you. If you like reading about wild parties, extravagant characters (Georgia's best friend Andrew being my absolute favorite) and a lonely cowboy or two, make sure you pick up Pants on Fire.