Before Candance Bushnell there was Cosmopolitan's legendary HGB.
Helen Gurley Brown was the original single girl in New York. She was well positioned Before Candance Bushnell there was Cosmopolitan's legendary HGB.
Helen Gurley Brown was the original single girl in New York. She was well positioned too. The sexual evolution was her calling card and this book was the first modern guide to living life. HGB was to women what Hugh Hefner in the 1960s was to men. This book, groundbreaking as it was, paved the way for Candace Bushnell and her Sex and the City fame. Sex and the Single Girl is about being a modern woman seeking adventure and passion more than an MRS degree. HGB dished it out with advice on being sexy, enjoying the night life, and enjoying sex without fear of pregnancy.
The pill revolutionized gender relations and this book was pivotal in letting women know that the old school 1950s no longer existed. While it may be dated now, any feminist ought to read this book as its impact on the lives of females is still being felt today. HGB was not a feminist. She was a woman who captured the power of women that exploded in the 1960s. There was no other rule book until this book was published.
One thing about HGB is that she carried along with a married man back in the day. It’s been going on for centuries but she actually spoke about it openly. Looking back on the events since this was first published almost makes you wonder how feminism would have developed without HGB. ...more
Author Imelda Whelehan traces the evolution of feminist writings from the academic to the iconic pop culture books of modern times. The writings may eAuthor Imelda Whelehan traces the evolution of feminist writings from the academic to the iconic pop culture books of modern times. The writings may evolve but one thing is clear, that the introduction of the pill radically altered how men and women dated and mated, especially in major cities. The Feminist Bestseller is a synopsis and analysis of how feminist literature defined generations, segmented into sub-feminist themes, and continues to impact female sexual behavior.
Feminism is a political statement but it has taken many forms given geography and cultural trends. Feminism promised equality and with the pill became the driving force for sexual emancipation in the 1960s. Pop culture books and movies appeal to women who are single or married because of the promise of an eternal youth, free of the confines of Victorian sensibilities. Between serious books and more stylish outpourings in the feminist genre, sex and the single female has never been the same.
Chick lit, a sub version of feminist literature, is the most read version of mainstream feminist bestsellers. Ripe with romance, angst, heartbreak, a career girl making a choice, it's the perils of feminism made front and center in a funny witty fashion. Have women become equal now? In some ways but in other respects, feminism has rendered entire groups of women alone, isolated, and robbed of the joys of motherhood. We can't be Carrie Bradshaw forever. Eventually she too got married and the woman who brought her to life is settled in domestic comfort with a husband and three children. ...more
Harriet Evans has established herself as a leading author of women's literature. The British writer The choices we makes in the past haunt us forever
Harriet Evans has established herself as a leading author of women's literature. The British writer has already published several books that touch upon the themes of the modern woman's struggle with relationships and love. While this genre is certainly covered by many other authors, Evans is without doubt original and refreshing with her formula-free tales. In Happily Ever After Evans brings us a new story about the perils of being young and searching for a happy ending.
The story is familiar. A 22-year-old named Eleanor Bee has decided that her life is to be a famous writer in London. Unlike her contemporaries she does not believe in happy endings after becoming jaded from the divorce of her parents. As far as Eleanor is concerned the only happy endings possible exist in fairytales. Eleanor sounds like a sensible girl who definitely knows what she wants in life. As our heroine sets out to make her future dreams a reality in the present she moves to London and finds work at Bluebird Books publishing. Her new job brings her the kind of contemporary urban life in London that she desired. And so starts the road to adulthood that includes the typical tales of woe and worry that many 20-somethings must deal with.
Suddenly 10 years have gone by and Eleanor at 32 faces midlife looming around the corner. She looks at how much her life has unfolded so differently than she imagined. It all happened when she fell in love out of the blue in her younger years. Falling in love and realizing how little you know about life makes you worry how unprepared you are for what follows next. The sad thing is that life is a series of events that are tied to the past. Evans makes it clear that as much as Eleanor tries to escape the past it just won't let her get away. This is a common theme explored in so many fiction and nonfiction works but in Eleanor there are some lessons only Evans can tell us. This is a charming book and certainly proves that Evans has much more literary tales still in her to entertain us with. ...more
When an Anglo-Indian woman discovers an old family secret from her grandfathers it changes her perspective Family entaglements and the ties that bind
When an Anglo-Indian woman discovers an old family secret from her grandfathers it changes her perspective of her own identity. Natasha Kapoor loves visiting her grandparents’ home on the coast. She is enjoying a swinging London lifestyle that includes a career as a successful jewelry designer. She's also married and about to be divorced. When her grandmother dies and she visits her ancestral home in Cornwall for the funeral it sparks unanswered questions to a lifelong mystery.
Embedded in Natasha's family secret is her dead aunt Cecily who left the family many years ago. Cecily had died as a teenager and it is a loss that Natasha’s grandparents never quite got over. The long dead Cecily harbors a haunting specter in the dynamics of Natasha's family. Her curiosity is sparked when her grandfather gives her long-lost diary that Cecily used to chronicle the strange and complicated dynamics between her parents and siblings. Not only is Natasha left speechless by the contents of the diary but the sadness and betrayal of Cecily’s short life spurs Natasha to learn the truth about her own origins.
Everything that Natasha thought she was is turned upside down as she pieces together the details of Cecily’s forbidden love and risky choices. Evans weaves a tale of how we can learn from those who come before us. The discovery of Cecily’s life nearly half a century after death her offers a perspective that can help Natasha ease into a new future without her husband. Natasha’s unusual family is comprised both of traditions from two worlds and it is Cecily’s confusion and rebellion that reveals how much of the family is tied up in the past. Evans makes us wonder if Natasha can see past the pain and tragedy of Cecily to live out the rest of her life fully with the lessons learned from her aunt’s old diary entries. ...more
For some women the notion of finding a knight on a white horse does not end with adulthood. In A Hopeless Romantic Addicted to love is still addiction
For some women the notion of finding a knight on a white horse does not end with adulthood. In A Hopeless Romantic we see how much romance and its fantasy has been the most difficult thing to achieve for Laura Foster. This is the sad thing about living your life with expectations based on romance novels and romantic movies. Real life never measures up to fiction. To expect it to is to only set oneself up for disappointment. Unfortunately Laura does not realize this and in her frenetic endless search for her Prince Charming there is disaster on the way. Evans paints a picture of a woman who suffers from an addiction to romance and like any dependency makes terrible consequences that harm her health, livelihood, and relationships.
So like an alcoholic goes cold turkey, Laura finally decides that she will give up her addiction to romance. Laura seeks to restore her mental health and the decision is a road to recovery that like any path to sobriety has many bumps. Shortly after deciding to give up men and love Laura decides to get away from her life in London and spend time with family. Just when she thought that she was getting better the old devil love shows itself in the person of Nick.
Laura can't help but be attracted to the handsome man that she finds herself drawn to. With her romantic triggers amplified Laura must find out whether she is capable of real love or if it's just old addiction to impossible romances rearing its ugly head. Evans makes us wonder if love in real life can be possible for one who has spent her entire life seeking fantasy. Evans writes an entertaining story of how the love you dream of can exist when one gives up the fantasy. Fairy tales are for children but true love is for people living in reality. ...more
One True Love Can Leave A Mark On Your Soul Forever
The Last Time They Met by Anita Shreve is a complicated and deeply moving rendition of lost and fo One True Love Can Leave A Mark On Your Soul Forever
The Last Time They Met by Anita Shreve is a complicated and deeply moving rendition of lost and found love. When a 17-year-old poet in Boston named Thomas Jane meets his equal in an orphaned girl named Linda he is in love for life. The teenagers are quickly drawn into an epic romance that defines their lives.
Thomas and Linda meet again in Kenya when they are both 26 and married to others. The reunion brings up memories of the car accident that separated them. Their renewed affair once again results in tragedy.
The soulmates connect for the final time a lifetime later in Toronto for a poetry conference when they are 52. Linda is a minor poet while Thomas has become an American version of T.S. Eliot. This is the most heartbreaking part of their relationship when the truth of their young love comes to light and shatters a carefully constructed fantasy that defined them. ...more
Can we all just get over high school? Seriously, Nicholas Sparks is not helping us forget all the crazy adolescent e Another chance at love .... again
Can we all just get over high school? Seriously, Nicholas Sparks is not helping us forget all the crazy adolescent emotions we had what we just did not know any better. Every single book that he comes out with speaks like some kind of worship to the whole lost love, first love, and the love you never get over. Sparks brings us his newest book called The Best of Me which does not alter much from his tried-and-true formula of love come back to me. This time we read about high school students named Amanda and Dawson who are head over heels in the spring of 1984 in North Carolina. Like in most Sparks’ stories the characters are from two opposite worlds and must fight with society to be together. Both lovers are separated after graduation because of a series of unhappy incidents.
So, just like The Notebook we see that 25 years go by and Amanda and Dawson have a chance to right the wrong. In a moment similar to the film Cinema Paradiso the death of Tuck, the only one who supported their young romance, brings both of them back to their hometown. Tuck left behind a series of instructions that supposedly are meant to put the two older sweethearts on a path of self-discovery in healing as they face their most painful memories. Oh brother. Trust me, high school sucks. Unless you were popular you probably did not enjoy it. Between the cliques and social pressure of teenage angst combined with those crazy hormonal fluctuations, who liked high school? Maybe Matthew Morrison who was popular back in the day but he is an outlier. The likes of many other stars would never want to repeat grades 9 to 12 ever again even if it meant getting another chance at youth.
There are some darker more serious elements in the book. Dawson is an ex-con with a hard luck life. Amanda is married to a wealthy man and plays the rich society wife whose only job is raising her kids. When they are back in each others' lives it’s a recipe for disaster. Dawson runs into a murderous cousin when he heads home to scatter tuck’s ashes and Amanda’s family hate Dawson more than ever. Tuck is clearly broken but Tuck’s attorney convinces him to perform the old man’s last request. It’s clear that as adults the two former flames are dealing with the same set of circumstances that tore them apart. Sometimes books like this remind us to leave the past behind. Dawson striving to recreate a memory is not only foolish but unrealistic. With the violence that follows their love its cliché to give these characters the ending that Sparks did. ...more
Can’t we all do ourselves a favor and let go of old loves? High school and childhood sweethearts are overrated. Seriously, lengthy recollections of thCan’t we all do ourselves a favor and let go of old loves? High school and childhood sweethearts are overrated. Seriously, lengthy recollections of the main character of Erin Andrews over Nate Lawson is the most nauseating read ever. With its constant references to a high school relationship, not only does the 37-year-old character sound like a perpetual adolescent but also a love obsessed neurotic.
Teenage lovers are an illusion to a past long gone. Who wants to sing love songs to a high school jock anyway? People need to grow up. A lifelong urge to ruminate over 16-year-old issues and its unfinished business is a choice. You can finished old unresolved situations in a heartbeat but choosing to let go. Instead, this fictional tale is siply one long addiction to love drama.
The story opens with Erin Andrews, hotel event planner, working on a Super Sweet 16 party. She is engaged to a handsome Washington, DC lawyer and is a single mother to her own teenage daughter. Once she gets a proposal the face and name of Nate Lawson pops into her mind. Without a thought of her adult life Erin sets out to find Nate for God knows what. Turns out Nate broke up with her when he thought she cheated on him. Adolescent boys can be so moody too. Yet Erin fails to forgive her indiscretions and searches for redemption with her one and only Nate.
People troll high school reunions in search of that first love or unrequited high school crush. The one who meant everything to them as kids and many realize how foolish they were to hold on. Is it really love one is after? Or more accurate it is some kind of approval from days gone by? Why do some give such power away? Isn’t the better choice to seek out a therapist? Erin does find Nate and all the drama starts up again. Nate is married himself and as the story progresses its clear how misguided both Erin and Nate were and still are. Nostalgia is a bitch. ...more
A new classic that makes you appreciate the art of writing instead of email
The Last Letter From Your Lover is a double love story set four decades apart in London that promises to be an instant classic. The first part of the story begins in the early 1960s when a 26-year-old English society wife named Jennifer Stirling falls into a coma after a car accident. After she awakens in a London hospital with amnesia, Jennifer Stirling must piece together who she is and what her life was. Over the next several months Jennifer spends her days having society lunches and dinners while trying to recapture her memories.
When Jennifer discoveries hidden love letters from a man named Anthony O’Hare she begins to recover. What unfolds in her correspondence are the words from a man with whom she was about to run away with. Jennifer searches for Anthony only to be told that he has died. He hasn't.
In 2003 London journalist Edie Haworth finds a box of letters in the library of her newspaper building. The letters captivate Edie’s curiosity and she embarks on an investigative search for Anthony and Jennifer. Edie is convinced that there is a story in this doomed love affair that could resurrect her career and love life.
This book is a serious page turner. Be prepared to give up a weekend of your life in order to consumer this book from start to finish!...more
This is perhaps the most splendid love story in decades. Originally a bestseller in Germany, The Art of Hearing Heartbeats is a romance that spans five decades and is set off by a mysterious disappearance. A prominent Burmese-American celebrity lawyer in New York vanishes without a trace on a routine business trip to Boston by switching to a plane bound to Thailand. In the years since he went missing it is the conclusion of many that his disappearance was of his own making. Thus starts the story, of how a formerly blind man known as Tin Win, was marked by a tumultuous childhood and bond that lasted despite time and place.
When Tin's daughter Julia leaves New York in search of her father, armed with a love letter from 1955 written to a mysterious woman, she travels to Burma and the village of Kalaw to learn about her father's past. What Julia discovers is not the betrayal and drama that she and her mother expected but an unbelievable tale of faith. Julia finds out about the tragic circumstances of her father's blindness and upbringing amongst Buddhist monks and his love for Mi Mi. Mi Mi was a crippled woman who helped Tin navigate his way around Burma as he carried her on his back while she acted as his eyes.
There is definitely a sense of epic truths being unraveled in this book. When many a book club decided to read it as part of their monthly hobby they were undoubtedly surprised. Sendker has constructed a very potent plot that encompasses pre and postwar Burma and events leading up to modern day New York. Tin Win has lived many lives and from his birth was surrounded with a superstition and tragedy. What is unimaginable is that, despite an intense bond with Mi Mi, Tin ended up in America living a celebrity lawyer's life without ever mentioning his past and her. Reading this book makes you wonder, what other secrets do all of us keep?...more