Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Juvenile Diaries

I was excited after watching SATC 2 and decided to jump right into The Carrie Diaries. I should have tempered my expectations, considering:
  • Sex and The City was the only Candace Bushnell novel I didn't really enjoy.
  • There are no false promises about this being another fashionable, fun book. The back cover does state that the book is Carrie's coming of age story.
Though I obviously didn't go in thinking that this was about a 25 year old, I also thought that considering the writer's target audience it would have a chick lit kind of approach with a twist. Boy, was I disappointed. The story line and narration is one step above the Baby Sitter's Club (btw, I loved this series). Meaning if you were a preteen year old allowed to read the Baby Sitter's Club, you would actually be reading the Carrie Diaries in secret. I not sure the book will even appeal to teens who read stuff like the 'Twilight' series.

Maybe the book didn't appeal to me because the circumstances of my childhood were as different as possible from the one described there. There's a bit of teen angst, some boy trouble and a few bitchy girls. The storyline is tired and sounds recycled.

Anyway, here's the basic outline for those of you who want to know a bit more. Carries, who's part of a mildly dysfunctional family (even this aspect isn't strong enough to be interesting), lives in small town America and is desperate to get into a writing program. Our heroine's dad wants her to pursue a more intellectual field of study and she's torn between making him happy and following her dreams. Her close circle of friends don't exactly fit in with the nerds or the cool cliques at school. The bunch of friends try to make their mark in their last year of school with each member ultimately choosing their own path into adulthood. After being back stabbed by her best friend (I won't tell you how, or it might give away the story) our favourite girl decides to focus on getting out of her current stagnant life and into her dream one. She also gets better acquainted with one of her former high-school enemies, who actually helps her along the path to moving to her beloved New York.

Carrie doesn't come across as a unique character , expect for her desire to become a writer. The instinct to move to the Big Apple and write is the only link between the this character and the one in the SATC series. The part I liked best were the last few lines of the book, where another one of our iconic four is introduced (can't tell you more).

This is one mystery I just can't seem to solve. When SATC is one of my favourite shows (I also liked the movies, especially the second one.) I don't get why the original book or this one didn't hold my interest. I love Candace Bushnell's other books like '4 Blondes' and 'Trading Up'. Need to think on this, the analysis may help me become a better writer, or not.

Well those are my thoughts. Now tell me , what you thought of the book and the original SATC novel? Feel free to let me know if I'm completely out of touch with what most people like. Hey, this doesn't mean I'll stop my book reviews, however I just might view future books a little differently.


  1. I had been thinking about checking this out from the library. I haven't read any of the books yet. Currently, I'm working on A Confederacy of Dunces (okay so far, though I'm only on Chapter 2!) Thanks for the review!

    It's Mom Prom time! Come join the fun with me:

  2. Hi LambAround, thanks for visiting.

    I have been following the Mom Prom thingy at The Mommyologist. It's great fun.

  3. Hmmm - I am kind of touch and go with Candace Bushnell - I think I liked the 4 Blondes short stories - but other than that - i could not get into her stuff . . . and i thought that SATC 2 was just terrible . . . i was a fan of the show though. . .

  4. Hi Masala Chica, thanks for stopping by. The responses to Candace Bushnell's books and the SATC movies are so mixed.

    No wonder men say they don't understand us, each of us is truly unique, working girl, mom, wife, boss, whatever we may be.

    Love your blog design, by the way.


I love hearing from all of you....thanks for letting me know what you think