G.H. Eckel's Reviews > Funny Girl

Funny Girl by Nick Hornby
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If you go into the book expecting a laugh, you'll be disappointed. It's more of a drama about a pretty, British woman from a small town who dreams of being Lucille Ball. Her pageant-winning beauty gains her entry into the writing combine of a bad British TV show. She, however, resurrects the story and becomes its main character. The show is successful and somewhat amusing to the reader. What's interesting is how unfunny most of the novel is but I take that to be an insight into human nature. Sometimes we want to be exactly what we are not: a pretty woman who doesn't care about her beauty and wants instead to be funny but isn't. It's the "other side of the fence" syndrome. And once on that side, there are other fences to look over.

The banter between fellow TV show writers is sometimes funny. They're the dodgy veterans of show business who are interesting characters, who actually should be on the comedy TV show... as they are on display for us, the reader.

We root for the protagonist to succeed but there's not much cause for empathizing with her, really. She starts out as a beauty pageant winner, whips a lousy TV show concept into something viable, then becomes its star. Great. And, so what.

Hornby, as a writer is a pro. From the start you feel in good hands. At best, the novel taps into all of our aspirations to realize a dream and, as Marlon Brando said in On the Waterfront, "Become somebody."
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Reading Progress

March 25, 2016 – Started Reading
March 25, 2016 – Shelved
March 31, 2016 – Finished Reading

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