So I might be a bit late to the game, here, but I just discovered Jen Lancaster. And I find her absolutely hilarious! I have read two of her books and am working on a third.
I started with “The Tao of Martha,” after I read a review of it in a magazine and decided it sounded worth a shot. I was pretty instantly hooked, as she chronicled her missteps and lessons learned during her year of living out the spirit of Martha Stewart. I must admit – I didn’t actually “read” these books; rather, I listened to them on audiobooks from the local library. So, the fact that I was able to easily place myself in Jen’s shoes may be due to the fact that I was actually listening to her voice telling me the story. (Yes, it really is read by the author – how cool is that?!) I laughed out loud listening to her accounts of her “asshole” cats knocking over vases on exquisitely-set tables just prior to guests arriving for a dinner party. I could imagine the exact same thing happening in my life, considering my own cats and their penchant for destruction at the most inopportune moments. And, listening to her voice as she told of her love for her dog, Maisy, and what became known as the “Tao of Maisy,” gave me pause to consider the special animals in my own life who have taught me lessons through their unconditional love. As soon as I finished this book, I instantly began “If You Were Here.”
I was hesitant with this one, since it’s a work of fiction, and I had grown to love Jen telling her own stories. But let me assure you – this is still Jen, telling her own stories, but she has very thinly veiled the truth. Instead of her real-life dog, Maisy, in this book you will meet the fictional dog…Daisy. And the spirit of Jen and her husband, Fletch, that you come to know and love in “Tao” are both very much present in the characters of “Mia” and “Mac” in this book. It even still takes place in Chicago. I was sold pretty much instantly, just as I had been with the previous book. I won’t give too much away about this book, but I will inform you that you will never look at a John Hughes movie the same way again, nor will you dare to underestimate a home repair/renovation project. I will state one thing, though: If you do not fall in love with Babcia, well, it’s not her…it’s you.
Currently I’m working on “Here I Go Again,” which, as you may suspect, is in fact named after the Whitesnake song. I have yet to finish it, but I can tell you my impression from what I have gotten through. This one is a bit different. Still read with Jen’s voice, and still coming from her creative, fabulous, and hilarious mind. But it’s not from her viewpoint, and this has thrown me off slightly. I am adjusting to this new main character, and this is certainly unique, as the main character is someone who you want to hate, but well…just sort of…can’t. More to follow on this one once I get through it.
Very excited for Labor Day weekend – the 3-day weekend is much desired and deserved!