Vicki Townsend is a 30 something London singleton who works as an editor at Poise!, a popular UK woman’s magazine. Amber Winslow is a 30 something ‘desperate housewife’ in the posh NYC commuter suburbs who has given up a promising legal career to be a stay at home mom and small town socialite. Both Vicki and Amber feel like the grass is greener on the other side of the ‘married with children’ divide, and so when Poise! decides to do a feature on just that topic, they agree to test their theories by stepping into the other woman’s shoes (literally- they switch wardrobes too).
I’ve read Jane Green novels before and I forgot just how enjoyable they are. She writes true ‘Chic Lit’, and I’m realizing I don’t pick up that genre very often. I think I lump Chic Lit in with ‘Romance’ novels, which does it a disservice. Not that I don’t enjoy a good romance, but Chic Lit, at least as Jane Green writes it, is primarily about ‘women finding themselves’ rather than ‘women finding love’ stories- I like and appreciate that these female characters have dreams and desires beyond how to catch a man. I also love how likeable Jane Green’s characters are- these are characters you can root for and empathize with, as opposed to problematic anti-heroes. Finally, I appreciated that the overall message of acceptance that the book was putting forward- whether you are a suburban mom or urban singleton is not the determining factor in how sweet your life is; rather, the sweetness is in building a life that is your own.