With friends like these…watch your men

The March 15, 2013 issue of Booklist features a special Spotlight on Women’s Fiction, and in honor of that, most of my posts for the next 2 weeks will follow that theme.

Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin is chick lit with a bit of a twist—the chick cheating with her best friend’s fiancé is actually the sympathetic character here. When I read this back in 2004, I really, really wanted to hate it, because come on, who roots for the Other Woman?? But I couldn’t, because Giffin absolutely manages to tell the story in an engaging, charming way.

In Marisa De Los Santos’ Belong to Me, Cornelia and Teo are a happy suburban couple. When Cornelia meets the beguiling and mysterious free spirit Lake, the two women become fast friends. Unfortunately, Lake has ulterior motives and is keeping a big secret from her new friend.

Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah  is the story of Tully and Kate, inseparable childhood friends. Kate, however, falls in love with Tully’s ex-boyfriend. Fast forward 30 years and Tully betrays Kate on live television when she accuses her of being a bad mother. Will their friendship ever recover?

Jane Heller’s Best Enemies finds Amy catching her fiancé and her best friend Tara in bed together. In time, Tara marries the lout, and Amy becomes a top PR woman. When Tara writes a book about her perfect lifestyle—a total lie, by the way—Amy is, naturally, assigned to promote it.

Marian Keyes writes some of my favorite chick lit novels.  In The Other Side of the Story, Lily, an author, stole her best friend Gemma’s man. Gemma starts writing funny emails about her breakup that land on the desk of Lily’s agent Jojo, much to Lily’s jealous dismay, since she is struggling to write her second book… and also finding that life with Gemma’s ex is not at all what she expected.

The Myth of You & Me by Leah Stewart is literary chick lit. Cameron and Sonia were childhood best friends from until they had a huge falling out after college. After not speaking for 10 years, Sonia sends Cameron a letter announcing her engagement, prompting Cameron to track her down and unravel the real reason behind the end of their friendship.

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About the Author:

Rebecca Vnuk is the editor for Collection Management and Library Outreach at Booklist. She is also the author of 3 reader’s-advisory nonfiction books: Read On…Women’s Fiction (2009), Women’s Fiction: A Guide to Popular Reading Interests (2014), and Women’s Fiction Authors: A Research Guide (2009). Follow her on Twitter at @Booklist_RVnuk.

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