Thursday, April 10, 2008

"Nothing Serious," by Justine Levy (book review)

Okay, well, we had book group last night and someone who didn't read the book said she planned to just read about it on my blog tomorrow. I wasn't planning to write about it, but since the hostess, DL, sent me the following link I thought I'd put up the link and at least say something.

The author, Justine Levy, was interviewed by Sheelah Kolhatkar in The New York Observer on October 2, 2005. Good interview, albeit a little outdated; it reports that the evil "other woman" is married to Justine's ex-husband and they have a child. But by now, as we all know, she has moved on and is the first lady of France.

JM just sent me this link to a video of Levy's interview with Charlie Rose. (The video is 10 minutes long.) In this interview she states that she is a nicer version of the book's narrator, which was reassuring to hear!

Opinions of the novel at book group were mixed; personally I have been enjoying it (I still have 2 chapters left to go), and even though most readers don't like the narrator (she's a shallow, speed-addicted, spoiled rich girl-child), I have to agree with DL that she is very honest, and that is an endearing quality. Not to be snarky, but I liked her a WHOLE lot better than Elizabeth Gilbert, the author of the memoir Eat, Pray, Love that we read in book group last summer!

Despite being a child of privilege -- the daughter of a celebrity intellectual -- she did have a pretty messed-up childhood, caught between her divorced parents; so did her nasty ex-husband, also a son of celebrity intellectuals. I guess the book shows that no matter how privileged a life appears from the outside, it might not be all it's cracked up to be.

(Warning for authors: just hope that your book manuscript doesn't end up in the hands of an extremely depressed, recently divorced editor!!)

By the way, I was relieved to learn from that New York Observer interview that Justine Levy now has a daughter with her new lover; after reading about her tragic abortion it is such a relief!

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