I was first introduced to chick lit by picking up Jill A. Davis’ Girls’ Poker Night at someone’s house. I don’t even know where I was, but I was waiting for my mom and I just grabbed it off the shelf. I was hooked at the first sentence and promptly went out to Barnes & Noble and bought it that day.
Yeah, I went to a bookstore and bought it at full price. Isn’t that cute?
Since then, this book has stayed with me through college, the fun and tough times in Atlanta and the adventures I’ve had here in Orlando. It is taped together in three places. I gave it to my bridesmaids as part of their gift.
I love this book. No, you can’t borrow my copy, but I’ll be glad to buy you your own.
It’s honest. It’s light. It’s deep. It’s short. It still makes me laugh. It was also my introduction to chick lit. What’s chick lit? I’d call it light fiction. It usually has a female main character (or three, but I prefer one) who has a problem, meets a guy and it gets sorted out. Kind of like the book version of your classic romantic comedy movie.
But when people call chick lit fluff or nonsense or some other critical term, I just think they can’t be paying attention. Good literature doesn’t have to involve rape, murder and incest. For my purposes, I’d prefer it didn’t. Part of the reason I love this genre and this book is because it makes me say “Hey, I know that girl. That’s me.” She is wildly imperfect but she’s trying…something. I love to see that moment the character changes. She’s fed up with where she’s been, she’s finding the confidence to be herself, she’s trying something new…she’s changing! It gives me hope that maybe change is possible and it may not kill me.
*Side note: this is my only qualm with the Shopaholic series. Becky Bloomwood is super fun, but…she never really changes. Otherwise, she’s fabulous.*
In the case of Girls’ Poker night, our girl is trying to start over and get it right.
A short synopsis: Ruby Capote realizes she’s in a dead-end relationship and decides to start over in New York. She gets a job at The New York News writing a humorous column of the life of a single girl in the city (yes, I know, this isn’t a new idea). She starts up a poker night with some of her friends from college. Ruby is working through many issues and facing some big fears.
One of my favorite parts is a moment where she is having one of her many internal dialogues. This thought process is particularly true for me and I try to think of it every time I find myself facing something new, some change, something I think I’m not going to like.
“It’s all about might. It might hurt. It might not work. It might be awful. I never think it might work. It might be good. It might be fun.”
So, if you’re looking for a good beach read for the summer or just someone who is a little off-kilter, check out Girls’ Poker Night!
**Confession: This is the book the inspired me to write a book. And I did…soooo, you could check that out too…I mean, if you wanted to…no pressure. 😉