Ciara's Reviews > Bright Lights, Big Ass: A Self-Indulgent, Surly, Ex-Sorority Girl's Guide to Why It Often Sucks in the City, or Who Are These Idiots and Why Do They All Live Next Door to Me?

Bright Lights, Big Ass by Jen Lancaster
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Sep 20, 11

bookshelves: read-in-2011
Read in September, 2011

it had been a while since i read a book by jen lancaster. i kind of OD'ed on her books last years & grew to find them absolutely insufferable, but i think some time & distance enabled me to appreciate this for what it is. which is 400 pages of pretty effective, sometimes unbearable humor. she breaks up her chapters with reprints of weird e-mails she sends to her friends & letters to her aldermen that i really hope she doesn't actually send. i could have lived without those bits, which felt like notes for chapters that just never got written, probably because there wasn't enough of a story to them. that's the kind of thing that works on a blog, but gets tedious in a book.

jen is an unapologetic republican with a lot of unexamined privilege, which i find really grating, but if you can overlook that, there is some legitimately funny stuff in here. i laughed out loud three times, which doesn't happen every day. think of her as laurie notaro, but actually humorous. & do yourself a favor by spacing her books out. you will grow to hate her with the power of a thousand suns if you just read her books one right after the other.
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