Calendar Girl af Audrey Carlan

calendar girl book review lola ramona shoes

Titel: Calendar Girl
Forfatter: Audrey Carlan
Først udgivet: 2015
Jeg vil anbefale bogen til: Dig, der er vild med Fifty Shades of Grey
Sådan starter den: Ægte kærlighed findes ikke.
1 af 5 stjerner

Mia Saunders har travlt med at skaffe en ordentlig stak penge (nøjagtig 1 million dollars) for at betale sin fars gæld. Ellers bliver Mia, faderen (som ligger i koma) og søsteren alle sammen slået ihjel. Så Mia bliver escortpige, og er så heldig, at blive booket hele måneder ad gangen, så hun kan nå at betale sin fars gæld efter præcis et år. Hun må selv om, om hun har sex med dem, men det er ikke det hun bliver betalt for. I ‘Calendar Girl Januar’ skal Mia hjælpe en rig surfer dude med at holde gold diggers på afstand, så han kan koncentrere sig om sit arbejde. Og så skal hun også bo hos ham. Hvorfor forstod jeg ikke helt.

Jeg har læst mange dårlige bøger, men den her tog prisen som noget af det dummeste jeg længe har læst. Plottet er tyndt og urealistisk, men de ville i og for sig være ligegyldigt, hvis historien var gribende og velskrevet. Det var så ikke tilfældet.

Hvor skal jeg starte …

Lad os prøve med Mia. Forfærdelig selvfed hovedperson. Hun bliver ved med at indirekte rose sig selv til et punkt, hvor det nærmest er komisk. Fx roser hun sin veninde til skyerne, og slutter af med at sige:

Det var det, der gjorde hende speciel. Hun sagde tingene som de var … altid. Fuldstændigt ligesom mig selv.

Og senere beskriver Mia hvor smuk hendes moster er, for så at tilføje, at de ligner hinanden på en prik. Og så er hun fantastisk til at give gode råd til andre. Da hun møder en kvinde, der er trist fordi hun savner sit gamle job, hvor hun arbejde med børn, foreslår Mia, at hun kunne begynde at arbejde med børn igen – eller selv få børn! Jamen altså, hun burde blive livs coach, hende Mia dér! Men hun skulle nok lige en tur forbi en psykolog først – hendes far er i koma og en gangster truer Mia og søsteren på livet, og Mia er på ingen måde mærket af det. Tværtimod er hun oppe og køre over sin nye garderobe.

Bogen er fyldt med fejl. Stavefejl, trykfejl og deciderede fejl. Fx da surfer dude sender hende en sms med information om hvor og hvornår de skal mødes, tager hun fat i sin iPhone for at finde vej. Nej, kære Audrey Carlan, hvis hun lige har læst en sms skal hun ikke til at finde sin iPhone frem, så har hun den allerede i hånden! Og så er der denne her:

Hun kyssede ham blidt og rystede på hovedet. “Ja, det er fint. Meget fint.”

Prøv selv at ryste på hovedet imens du siger ‘ja’. Det er fysisk modstridende. Om det er en fejl fra forfatterens side, eller en fejl i oversættelsen skal jeg ikke kunne sige. Men dumt er det.

Og så er bogen dræbende kedelig. Det er næsten det værste.


In English
Mia Saunders is struggling to make a pile of money (one million dollars to be exact) in order to pay her father’s debts. If she can’t, the entire family will be murdered. So Mia becomes an escort girl. In January, she helps a rich surfer dude to keep the gold diggers at bay, so he can concentrate on his work. And she has to live with him. Why exactly is still beyond me. Read more.

Mariana af Monica Dickens

mariana lola ramona

This review is also available in English

Titel: Mariana
Forfatter: Monica Dickens
Først udgivet: 1940
4/5 stjerner

I ‘Mariana’ følger vi en ung piges opvækst i 1920erne og 30erne. Vi følger hendes barndomsminder, forelskelser, hjertesorg, drømme og skuffelser. Det er en simpel med fin historie uden det store drama. Bogen er sød uden at være vammel, og er simpelthen en herlig fornøjelse at være i selskab med. Jeg nød hver side, og ønskede, at den aldrig ville slutte. Jeg sneg mig til at læse hvert øjeblik jeg havde, og glemte alt om blog og strikkeprojekter.

People don’t want to read about people in heaven. They like to lick their lips over them in hell.

Jeg holdt umådeligt meget af vores hovedperson, Mary. Hun sætter pris på de gode ting i livet, føler kærlighed helt inde i sjælen, er kreativ og drømmende. Selvom hun er social, har hun behov for at være alene og nyder sit eget selskab. En pige efter mit hjerte!

She had a feeling of calmness, almost of dignity, that she had never had when she was not alone. With other people one was only an unconsidered fragment of the company; alone, one was a complete entity by oneself.

‘Mariana’ er en vidunderlig roman som jeg vil anbefale til alle, der holdt af I Capture the Castle, A Tree Grows in Brooklynn, ‘Anne of Green Gables’ og Jane Austen. Eller bare til alle, der holder af at læse dannelsesromaner fyldt med drømme og kreativitet.

She was nineteen and it felt wrong not to be in love.

Monica Dickens er en forholdsvist ukendt – for mig i hvert fald – forfatter, på trods af at hun har skrevet et hav af bøger og er Charles Dickens oldebarn. ‘Mariana’ har været ude af print i mange år og er først for nylig blevet genoptrykt – så det bliver spændende at se, om hendes andre bøger er til at støve op, men jeg vil gøre et ærligt forsøg.

This review is also available in English

mariana af monica dickens

The Bell Jar

the bell jar

The Bell Jar
Sylvia Plath
1963
234
New York and Boston, 1950s
It was a queer, sultry summer, the summer they electrocuted the Rosenbergs, and I didn't know what I was doing in New York.

Esther Greenwood, an intelligent and creative young girl, wins a writing contest and is awarded a job for the summer at a fashion magazine in New York. She should be enjoying the glammer and excitement that comes with the trip, but instead Esther finds herself sinking deeper and deeper into depression.

I was supposed to be having the time of my life.
I was supposed to be the envy of thousand other college girls just like me all over America.

Esther is a torn soul with a serious identity crisis. In New York she befriends two girls: the good girl Betsy and the bad girl Doreen. Esther feels attached to both girls but cannot be herself completely with either. Betsy is how Esther knows she should be, she's the girl she was brought up to be: finish college, marry a nice man and have kids.

I made a decision about Doreen that night. I decided I would watch her and listen to what she said, but deep down I would have nothing at all to do with her. Deep down, I would be loyal to Betsy and her innocent friends. It was Betsy I resembled at heart.

Doreen on the other hand is wild and promiscuous, the kind of girl she is warned against by parents, teachers, books and movies. The kind of girl Esther is afraid to become but who she also feels drawn to.

Being with Doreen made me forget my worries. I felt wise and cynical as all hell.

It seems to Esther, there is no place for an inbetweener like herself. She doesn't fit either stereotype and is throughout the novel haunted by these limitations. She can't just be a person, she has to choose a ready-made role.

On top of that, Esther has no idea what to do with her life. She's about to finish school and is frustrated with the limited roles for a young woman. She's expected to marry and have children and forget about her education and writing.

I also remembered Buddy Willard saying in a sinister knowing way that after I had children I would feel differently, I wouldn't want to write poems anymore.

I think this was my third visit to The Bell Jar. I listened to the audio this time and can highly recommend Audible's version, beautifully narrated by Maggie Gyllenhaal - she did a fine job of captured the wit and sarcasm of the novel.

Even though the novel is dark and tragic, it's also light-hearted and extremely humorous. Particularly the scenes in New York and the flashbacks to her school days and her romantic relationships are some of my favorites. It remains one of the most clever and amusing books I have ever read.

No Name

no name by wilkie collins and shoes by Chie Mihara

A thrilling classic with a strong female character, a plot full of twists and turns, but too many details. Recommended for classic-lovers.

No Name
Wilkie Collins
1862
audio
741 (or 29 hours)
Victorian England
The hands on the hall-clock pointed to half-past six in the morning.

Two sisters in Victorian England: the sensible and compliant Norah and the somewhat spoilt Magdalen Vanstone come from a good family. At their parents' sudden death, a family secret is revealed and the sisters are disinherited and become 'Nobody's Children'. Norah makes her way by becoming a governess, while Magdalen sets out on a cruise for justice and revenge, using her acting skills.

Magdalen is an unconventional Victorian woman, but a true Wilkie Collins heroine: a strong and brave woman who defies gender roles and sets out to save the day. She reminded me a lot of Marian Halcombe from Collins' most famous novel, The Woman in White.

This novel has an amazing set of characters, some true villains, both male and female, and the plot is full of twists and turns, that kept me on the edge of my seat. At least for some of the time. The novel has its flaws IMO, namely the many details and repetitions of various legal documents. They became a bit tedious and I lost interest from time to time, which is why I'm only giving the novel 3 stars.

I listened to this as a free audio from LibriVox. It's read by volunteers, and I'm sad to say the quality wasn't always good. One of the narrators actually sounded a bit like Janice from Friends ...

Oh, and the shoes in the photo are by amazing Chie Mihara.