When Life Gives You Lululemons by Lauren Weisberger Review

When Life Gives You Lululemons Review
When Life Gives You Lululemons by Lauren Weisberger, ISBN 9780008303679, 410pp

When Life Gives You Lululemons by Lauren Weisberger is an entertaining, easy to digest read. It’s the third book by Weisberger to feature the character Emily Charlton (you might remember her as Miranda Priestley’s prickly first assistant from The Devil Wears Prada). In this book Emily finds herself in the upscale suburb of Greenwich where the mums throw sex toy parties, get designer vaginas after giving birth and run around in Lululemon activewear.

Emily is in Greenwich visiting an old friend, Miriam, who used to be a high-flying New York lawyer but is now a stay-at-home-mum of three and trying to navigate the outrageous waters of Greenwich. Continue reading

Revenge Wears Prada – Spoiler Review

Revenge Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger (ISBN: 9780007477289, 420pp, pub June 2013)
Revenge Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger (ISBN: 9780007477289, 420pp, pub June 2013)

I was interested to read Revenge Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger. It has been years since I read The Devil Wears Prada and I was curious to see where the tormented Andy Sachs and her diabolical ex-boss Miranda Priestly were now. However, the more I got into this book, the more I recalled how much the first book had annoyed me and how it was really the film version that I had fond memories of, not the book.

I had forgotten how annoying Andy Sachs was and how unaware she was of the people around her. In Revenge Wears Prada, set 10 years after the first book, Andy has launched a successful high-end wedding magazine with Emily. She is also getting married to a wealthy and handsome man from a privileged family background. But is she happy? Of course not! The book opens with whining. Her husband clearly worships the ground she walks on but she would rather dwell on some perceived slight.

I waited for this unfortunate intro to end and for the fun to begin. It didn’t. Next Andy gets pregnant and the reader is treated to her not wanting to tell her new husband and wondering if she should leave him because his mother doesn’t like her and he talked to an ex on his bachelor weekend.

Then after pages and pages of that, finally Miranda enters the book – very briefly. It turns out she wants to acquire their wedding magazine. Emily thinks it is a great idea. Andy doesn’t. Pages of that and then lots of baby stuff. Then they meet Miranda and it isn’t really that interesting. Then after lots more moaning, Andy’s husband signs with Emily to hand the magazine over to Elias Clark and Miranda’s clutches.

Finally, I thought. Now it will get interesting with Andy working under Miranda again. But no. Andy resigns from her magazine. One year later … she is divorced from her husband and doing something or other. Then she meets up with her original boyfriend Alex from The Devil Wears Prada and they decide to try again. The End.

I don’t usually spoil the plots of books for fellow readers but this was just a disappointment and very misleading. It barely featured anything on Miranda – a character you love to hate. And Andy as a protagonist just wasn’t likeable in any way. It’s not worth spending 420 pages with someone you want to slap.

Are Sequels Always a Good Idea?

The Devil Wears Prada (film)
The Devil Wears Prada (film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I recently read online that Lauren Weisberger is going to write a sequel to The Devil Wears Prada. Andy, Emily and Miranda will all be reappearing in a book entitled – Revenge Wears Prada: The Devil Returns. Can’t you just see the movie version already? Who wouldn’t want to see Meryl Streep, Anne Hathaway and Emily Blunt reprise their iconic roles?

But is a sequel really necessary? Wasn’t everything said in The Devil Wears Prada? Miranda was a horrible boss. Andy went along with it and then she quit. The End. It was a worldwide smash hit, as was the movie. What more is there to say?

Some stories are just meant to be stand-alone. I wonder if TDWP is one of them. How many times have you seen a great movie and then the sequel just doesn’t do it any favours? (Sex and the City is a perfect example). The same can be said with books.

Writing a sequel can be dangerous.

Pros
-I see another Meryl Streep, Anne Hathaway, Emily Blunt pairing-up in the movie sequel. Didn’t we all just love Meryl Streep as an uber-b*tch?
-Publishers will be seeing dollar signs. Bring out the book, then a year or two later bring out the film tie-in version and listen to the cash registers chiming around the world.
-It might be an entertaining read. I hope so. I know I’ll probably buy it.

Cons
-It’s a risky business. If it’s a stinker that is what you will be remembered for – not your original book. It can tarnish your author brand.
-The high expectations of fans of the original book will make it easy to disappoint them.
-Hasn’t Lauren already written enough about her former boss, Editor of Vogue, Anna Wintour? What’s left to say that we don’t already know?

If the story calls for it then by all means go for a sequel. But it’s a fine line between writing a sequel because the story needs to be told or writing it for the sake of needing to produce another bestseller.