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I pick books to read by creative and sometimes random leaps of logic. Her by Laura Zigman had catchy cover art and a title that reminded me by association with She by H. Rider Haggard, which in turn made me think of the Rumpole series. Somewhere in the middle of all that thinking I decided what the heck, I'd check out the book.
What sets Her apart from the other chick lit books I've read is that Elise, the protagonist, is the self described other woman. She is now going head to head with her fiancé's ex-girlfriend. She spies, she schemes, she plots and she seethes inside. It is really easy to get carried away with her perception of the situation and begin hating the boyfriend and his ex until Elise will do something so completely out of the blue to knock one out of the story.
The main drawback for me was Elise's personality. She spends so much of the book being defensive and paranoid that it's hard to like her or get to know her. If she went a little further (like torture, main or perhaps kill one or both of them) then she'd have the same uneasy charisma as Patricia Highsmith's Tom Ripley. As the book is pegged as a chick lit it's on a course for a happy ending which precludes Elise from embracing her inner Ripley. I would have given the book a five out of five if she had.
Comment #1: Thursday, February, 25, 2010 at 18:47:42
This reminds me of "Getting Rid of Matthew" by Jane Fallon (2007)
As the book blurb says: Helen been having a secret affair with a married man - her former boss - for the past four years. So when Matthew finally leaves his wife, Sophie, and moves in with Helen, you think she'd be delighted. But now she's decided she doesn't want him anymore. So Helen embarks on a campaign to get rid of Matthew, including befriending his wife.
Comment #2: Saturday, February 27, 2010 at 22:31:48
Thank you for the recommendation. I have added it to my wishlist.
Comment #3: Friday, March, 26, 2010 at 08:05:06
I read this book ages ago, and from what I can remember, I had the same feelings about the main character.
Comment #4: Friday, March 26, 2010 at 14:58:08
Thanks for the comment. I'm glad I'm not alone in negative reaction to the main character.