And it was Lauren Weisberger s prose is witty and endearing, funny but also poignant I liked her erudite use of language, she can turn a phrase with the best of them.
For any out there who don t know what this is all about, quick summary college grad with aspirations of being a writer lucks into the dream job as the personal assistant to the editor of Runway magazine, a thinly disguised roman e clef about Vogue magazine and Weisberger s time there Most notably it is about her off the charts difficult boss, Miranda Priestly.
Fans of the film, and especially of Streep s superb portrayal of Miranda she was nominated for an Oscar but that award went to Helen Mirren will know about the diabolically aloof and condescending editor But Streep s performance and Frankel s direction gave us a human character For all her cold heartedness, Streep s Miranda is ultimately approachable and strangely likeable Weisberger s Miranda is a Nietzschean machine, ruthless to the core, reminiscent of Jack London s Death Larson the purely evil brother to Wolf Larson.
Ironically, Weisberger s Andy is not as likeable While Anne Hathaway s role gave us a vulnerable and dynamic portrayal, Weisberger s protagonist is not just seduced by a demanding job with a domineering boss, but she is demonstrably self centered to boot And the whining about the fashion job got old by the end of the novel making me want to scream fer Chistsakes either work or quit More than the surface story, though, this book made me wonder about our propensity towards hero worship Why do we put up with arrogance and pitilessness Weisberger notes how teenage girls and grown women fall over themselves for Miranda, Runway and fashion in general Why And guys, you re not off the hook either How many boys and men and men who act like boys will damn near grovel for sports stars For all the ridiculous sums paid for a Louis Vuitton product, how many testosterone and beer soaked males drop big bucks for tickets and sports apparel Why would we stand in line and pay hard earned money to people who care nothing for us and don t even pretend to Weisberger also makes me think about and question our work ethic Andy s new job takes all of her time and energy and causes riffs in her relationships with family and friends Certainly work and a career is vitally important, but so are bonds of affection and through Andy we can get a glimpse at priority and what is important.
The movie was too good Aka, there was a huuuuuuuge gulf between the book and the film I kept thinking maybe the beginning was just slow Maybe the middle needed a bit time Despite all my deep breaths and meditation, I could not stand this book The main character Andrea is so wholly irredeemable that she ruins the book Sure, she sacrifices her a few years for Mirandaha name buddies Priestly but Andrea whines her way through every little task and I lost all sympathy within the first chapter Her derision towards anyone who takes their fashion job seriously and her dismissal of everyone who isn t Miranda Priestley really struck a nerve You can tell a lot about a person by how they treat their peers The way she berated the other girls and acted so above them often showing this by eating the calorie laden soup in front of them just struck my last nerve.
And yes, Miranda is supposed to be the bad character but I liked her so muchthan Andrea Miranda s only real fault is her high exceptions Which she clearly spells out for every assistant who applies for her job Yes, those expectations include enough work for two peopleBUT all the girls who apply continuously assure her that they can take on the workload The absolute worst part The rapey love triangle that almost was There s the saintly boyfriend who put up with Andrea s neglect and obsession with this job They re practically set to get married after she finishes with Miranda Priestly Yet, Andrea constantly pulls away from him and ignores him for no other reason than her career is stressful I was so mad that she was deliberately screwing up a good thing.
Enter the Hot Rich Writer Guy who just may be interested in her writing but likely just wants to screw her It had an overall scummy vibe Example Andrea was called in to babysit the couple s child at their party.
which really was HotGuy calling in a favor and forcing her on a date as his babysitter for the night.
So this Sleezeball traps her into a conversation on her way out blocking her way out He s drunk, beligerant and keeps insisting she wants him He was leaning up against the frame with a smugly satisfied expression So little Andi, did I show you a good time tonight He slurred just a little bit and it seemed nothing short of adorable at that moment It was alright, I suppose Just alright Sounds to me like you wish I would ve taken you upstairs little Andi All in good time my friend, all in good timeThe way the scene was playing, I was 80% sure we were headed to a rape scene The whole chapter gave off an ominous vibe and I honestly thought that was going to be her getting at least assaulted by drunk HotGuy He s inebriated, he manipulated the entire evening to force her handdespite her telling him repeatedly that she has boyfriend She repeatedly says that he s used to getting exactly what he wantswas it really that far of a leap What killed me was despite all that, she finds him charming Are You Kidding Me Andrea this is not flirting Girl This is a honking huge red flag Run.
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5 starsIn Defense of Miranda PriestlyThe premise of this novel as most know it is OMG, my boss is a total dragon lady , but I think that is both an unfair assumption and oversimplification Little background is given of the title character other than she grew up in a lower class family, changed her name, and worked her way up the corporate ladder to her current position as editor in chief The audience isn t given much than that to round out her character, though Meryl Streep gives her depth in the movie adaptation which isn t saying much since Streep could star in the biography of a paper bag and still win an Oscar QueenInstead, we see Anna Wintour Miranda Priestly through the doe eyes of Andrea Andy Sachs, who doesn t realize that perhaps she is the real antagonist of the novel Through her own confession she has no clue about the company nor her potential boss when she takes on the role of Miranda s 2nd assistant, nor does she seem to really care While her coworkers at Runway are said to be vapid and stuck up, they have a much better work ethic than the lazy Andy who complains about every part of her job except all the perks, of which there are plenty She is ungrateful for the experience and the contacts she gains while doing Miranda s errands, instead she focuses on moaning about having to actually earn her dues I see her as an unreliable narrator since nearly all of her commentary comes from the place of entitlement.
Priestly is cast as the villain because she is difficult and demands efficiency, though one could argue that this book wouldn t be given nearly the mileage or popularity if the accusations hurled against her were by a male main character instead of speshul snowflake Andy There is a trope in modern culture that women in leadership positions have to fight double standards for acting the same way as their male counterparts, and this is never touched upon in the novel Can Miranda be cold and condescending at times Yes, however it is important to understand how much she has accomplished, her worth to the magazine and the fashion world, and the respect she has garnered in the industry She wouldn t have gotten where she was if she didn t have talent and gumption.
If there s an unlikeable character here, it s unappreciative Andy who doesn t like that she has to live outside the bubble she grew up in While she keeps being reminded that hers is a job that a million girls would die for and that working for Miranda for a year would save her 3 5 years of experience elsewhere, she decides to blow up at her boss in the 11th hour While the author was probably looking for the audience to cheer at the childish outburst of Fuck you, Miranda Fuck you p 342 and the resulting flouncing from Paris, I found this tantrum to be d class and further proof of Andy s wanton unprofessionalism.
God have mercy, I finally finished this horrific book Honestly, it wasn t so bad, just tedious and repetitive I picked it because a the movie was coming out and b I recognized the title as a popular book, albeit a couple years ago The premise to the book is that a young woman takes a Junior Assistant position at a high fashion magazine and the She Devil who runs the show The movie had the same premise, but that s practically where the similarities endAndrea Sachs takes the job, even though her dream job is an Editor position for the New Yorker Magazine, with the promise of getting said dream job much easier after devoting a year of her life to Miranda Priestly the She Devil One year is all it ll take to bypass several years of grovelling, or so she is led to believe But the year is spent instead in the most belittling, degrading and de humanizing environment that, frankly, pissed me off than the main character.
If you ve seen the movie, dont think you know the book Meryl Streep is overly demanding, despicable, and down right evil to snarky, quirky Anne Hathaway Eventually Anne s character loses her fashion victim status and transforms into one of her dreaded Clackers She reaches a point where she understands Meryl s character even sympathizes but makes a break when enough s enough.
Andrea, instead, distances herself from the fashionistas, makes futile spiteful jabs at Miranda and Co at every chance, and still loses herself She doesn t become the trendy girl not until she s far from the scene but does lose her identity by placing the needs of a neurotic insomniac before herself, her friends, and her family The book delves into her relationships on a completely differnt level actually the movie doesn t even touch them Let s do a short list of comparisions, shall weThe book Andrea has a steady boyfriend Ales, and lives with her best friend from childhood, Lily Takes the job because it s the only magazine in New York that offered an interview Puts her personal life on hold to be the beck and call girl for a Bitch Meets a hot writer who is totally jonesing for her and offers her several opportunities to, ahem improve her social standing She kinda ignores her failing love life and her best friend s alcohol addiction until it s too late to reverse either Goes to Paris with Miranda because the Sr Assistant gets Mono When is Paris she gets the call that her best friend s drinking caused a terrible accident and she must come home Finally has her fill and tells Miranda off, then gets fired Kinda blah ending in which she gets freelance work and gets to waltz back into the Runway office for a potential writing assignment The movie Andrea lives with her boyfriend, and has a small group of friends, one of which happens to be a black girl we could assume is Lily Takes the job because it was available Puts her personal life on hold to be the beck and call girl for a Bitch Meets a hot writer who keeps popping up in her life when she desperately needs help and a little pick me up, flirt wise Her boyfriend eventually gets fed up and sorta calls for a break Goes to Paris with Miranda because the Sr Assistant gets hit by a car and is then fired by Andrea because her mind is too adled when sick at an event to immediately recall a guest s name Discovers a plot to overthrow Miranda after she recently viewed a vunerable side and does her best to warn her, only to learn Miranda knew all along and didn t need her help This is when she decides she s had enough and litterally walks off the job Happy ending ensues with her getting a crap job and, unknowingly is seen by Miranda, who approves of her own fashion sense If I had read the book then saw the movie, I think I would have been pissed off at the screenwriters As it was, I did the opposite, but am still pissed I thought the book sucked large portions of ass There was quite a bit that was humorous, I ll grant you and the author that much, but it was so repetitive when describing her tasks which I guess was the point that I simply felt beat down Gotta give that to her she did know how to make her readers relate to her misery.
Did I like the book No.
Would I read another by her Not likely.
Would I recommend the book to others Not a chance Go rent the movie and at least laugh at it all.