Thursday, 28 March 2013

Artful Readers Club

My book review for March is not going to be a long one even though the book had 60 chapters.

Book ... Fast Friends

Author ... Jill Mansell

Published by ... Headline publishing

I found this book in a charity shop and thought it would be a good holiday read, therefore, I took it away with me this month on a trip to Tobago. Lucky me to get a bit of winter sunshine I know!

The book reviews on the back cover were pretty good. They ranged from 'Fast, furious and fabulous fun. To read it is to devour it,' to 'An exciting read about love, friendship and sweet revenge - fabulously fun.' I think this will be the last time I take any notice of such reviews.

The book is about three old school friends and their relationship with each other and their complicated and intertwined love lives. I found the characters rather irritating and shallow and some of the situations they found themselves in totally unbelievable. An example of this is when Camilla Stewart, the main character leaves her husband and children when she finds out that her husband is having an affair with one of her friends. Up to this point she had been portrayed as a loving but dowdy mother and wife whose children meant the world to her. Her children where not even spoken about for weeks when they suddenly seemed to have been remembered and even then they seemed of little significance!

The importance of designer cloths, handbags and shoes seem to dominate these women's lives along side romantic encounters with handsome pop stars and rich men. if I had not been on holiday and had plenty of time to carry on reading the book I would have given up and dumped it in the hotel's library. However, I did continue reading until the last page but felt a bit annoyed with myself for wasting good reading time!

Obviously other people have enjoyed this book, looking at the reviews on Amazon, I am in the minority in not doing so.

My book 'inspired' artwork:

My artwork, a collage, was done using a glossy fashion magazine that was free at the Airport and seemed to fit with the theme of overpriced clothes and makeup.

Thanks for visiting, I hope my next month's read will be much more fun as I have chosen 'Steal Like an Artist' written by Austin Kleon.

Definitely no 'Chick Lit' for me for a while.



Jez said...

That makes three of us so far who hated every page of our March books. And how annoying to be reading it on holiday in such a beautiful place.
Any time the word 'hilarious', or similar, appears on a book or DVD it's definitely a warning signal I've found.
So, thanks for making sure I never get tempted to read it.
Your piece of art expresses the way you describe the writing, and the annoying habit of some authors of describing every bit of designer clothing in detail. So the 'beautiful people' and designer labels makes a good representation of the book.
I enjoyed the review - and the artwork.

San @ Made in Hem said...

Oh, that's so sad you had such a book with you on a holiday... Most of the time I do like Jill Mansell! Easy to read and a happy ending, perfect for holidays!
Your art doesn't show you didn't like the book. I love your page! ♥ Even tough I have nothing with fashion and brands and glamour... :)

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

I hated last month's book, but I at least found inspiration in this month's ARC pick.

I enjoyed your honest review of this book, because it seems real reviews are those written by people you trust. I'm glad you finished it, though. It would have been a real waste had you not had a bit of time while on holiday.

Your collage is perfect for the theme of your book. And finding your inspiration for the page in a throw-away freebie is an added bonus in my book! Well, well done.

abby j said...

THanks for being so honest...I definitely WON'T read this book!!! Your art is very appropriate and, unlike the book, good!!

Janet said...

Wonderful review of an awful book. Thanks for being so honest. I shall avoid it. Your collage shows that not all your time was wasted. Great use of things around you. I have so much to learn.

Janet xx

Sarah said...

definitely not the book for me either, thanks for the warning :D

cool collage

Magaly Guerrero said...

You are an angel for finishing. I know how horrible it is to read a book that doesn't feel quite right, but like you I push through just to be annoyed in the end, though *sigh*

Your art work, on the other hand, makes me think of a movie--very visual. It totally rocks ;-)

Darcy said...

ohh what a shame to have a disappointing book, especially on holiday. Must have made it feel like a real chore. Artwork is great, very fitting to use the glossy magazine. It is good to read a real review though, I agree those one liners on the backs of books shouldn't be trusted.

Gina said...

I'm just guessing your not a "sex in the city" fan either lol...I would definitely heed your advice and steer clear of this one. I totally hate when the characters don't stick to their "character", and have no interest in designer labels or make-up. Your collage shows everything I dislike about magazines lol :D Great review :D XXX

jill mansell said...

So sorry you didn't enjoy my book. In my defence, I wrote that one over 25 years ago so hopefully my writing has improved since then - at the time, editors were insisting on designer labels being included. I no longer write about them at all, I absolutely promise!
Jill Mansell

NatashaMay said...

I don't like it either when a book goes against character you perceived the protagonist to be. It just ruins everything. Great collage!

Clare with paint in her hair said...

Sounds like a terrible book! I shall steer clear of that one. Love your art work, reflects it really well.

Leialoha said...

Thank you for sharing your beautiful glossy collage even though your what we call the 'beach read' turned out to be a bit how Jill Mansell commented on your post...interesting. Looking forward to your April pick...aloha.

Jen said...

Good review and your art work clearly expresses your feelings about the book. Inspired stuff. Will give this one a miss, thanks for the heads up.
Jen x

Just Words said...

I know exactly what you mean about reading a book you're not fond of. Thanks for finishing and giving a heads up about it. Loved the artwork. Very clever to use the images you found. Michelle V.

Jenny said...

Sounds disappointing Shirley... and especially as a holiday read... love what you did with the artwork though... very creative...

Jenny ♥

Lynne said...

Good review from you and WOW Jill Mansell read it too!!

Carmen said...

She is one of my sisters favourite authors and so I have read a couple of her more recent books (based on my sister's recommendations) and can agree with what (Wow!) Jill said above - there was none of that sort of story line. They were actually quite humorous and I'm not someone who likes chicklit or films like that.

Well done for plodding on, not sure I could have. Have you read Married With Zombies? That's a kind of mash-up of chick-lit and the zombie genre. Loved it. Looking forward to your Austin Kleon review. Thanks for your lovely comments over at mine :)

The collage is perfect - and I love the irony of completing a designer, shallow themed type piece with free to hand magazines :)

Manon said...

Well said I don't think this is going to my kind of book at all, I wouldn't like being round peple like that so why read a book about it. Great art collage so well said with all that bling.:) ManonX

Virginia said...

Mmm not my kind of book and a great review - shallow people whose possessions are more important than family seems a little crazy to me! Well done for sticking with it and the challenge, hope this month's book is proving more fun!

SusieJ said...

Excellent review...I read this years ago and can promise that Jill Mansell doesn't write like that any was very much of its time.
Excellent art really did capture the spirit of the 80's!
Hugs xx

Catie Cuddles said...

Chick kit is good for escapism and should not be regretted the time reading ... It gave your brain a rest! But agree a change of pace for next month to wake the brain again! Love the way you translated the book into the artwork though!