Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Girls's Guide to Witchcraft


I've read so many heavy histories lately that I decided I wanted something lighter from the library. This was a bit of a mistake because I am still in analytical mode. You should never read chick lit when your brain is actually working.

I have a lot of questions about this genre. There are a lot of stereotypes in the few books I have read. They almost feel like a grown up version of Mad Libs. (insert male name) is dreamy with wonderful (insert body part) but he doesn't know (female name) is alive. So, in spite of her previous bad experience with (different boy name) she will (complicated scheme) to make him notice her.

The heroine is always slightly neurotic with a weakness for chocolate. There is usually a best friend who is either a. happily married (causing jealousy and overhigh expectations) or b. similarly lovelorn, but is handling it in a completely different manner, for contrast. I have also notice the high percentage of gay male friends, to help the fashion-helpless girl to change and attract the sought male. Do gay guys get tired of this fashion-forward but frivolous and shallow stereotype? I would think it causes extreme pressure when dressing to go out.

I read these books with the same attitude I use when reading a YA book, entertaining, but I haven't ever really felt that way. Even when I was single I didn't judge a man by the way he filled out his jeans and the first kiss. At 25 I didn't feel myself a failure because I wasn't married and didn't even have a boyfriend (most of the time). Am I out of the mainstream or are these books exaggerations for the sake of comedy? I know that most of my personality and habits are a bit on the unusual side; I'm female and read science fiction, I voluntarily have five children, we don't watch television, just videos, and I don't do idle female chit-chat very well. My sphere of friends is pretty small so I honestly don't know if maybe a lot of women find these books realistic, but funnier than real life? Give me some input here. What are your opinions of "chick lit" type books.

All that being said, I did just check the sequel out the library this morning. They are very funny, if nothing else.

Girl's Guide to Witchcraft. Mindy Klasky. Red Dress Ink. 2006

4 comments:

jendoop said...

IMO you are right. I think these chick lit books do a great dis-service to most women who read them. It sets up completely unrealistic expectations of socializing. This is not normal, nor is it desirable behavior from a sane adult. It does alot of the same damage as romance books.

readerMom said...

They are basically romance, just funnier. Oh no, I've ruined my reputation and admitted I've read not just one, but several romance books. The shame!

jendoop said...

And you give me a hard time about picking up an Oprah book now and then?!!

Cammie said...

I think they are waaay funny, my fave ones are by Mary Janice Davidson ( I think thats her name)I read these when I need a good laugh. BUT I also got my reading taste from mom. I <3 Romance lol