I'm extending my break from Unbending Gender to read some more light-hearted fiction: How to Teach Filthy Rich Girls by Zoey Dean. The problem is, I'm not enjoying this one as much as I did Part-Time Indian.
I'm not crazy about Dean's writing style. I've noticed she is excessive about descriptions, frequently stopping the action for half-page paragraphs describing this or that character's appearance. Even worse, she did this within the first few pages.
I've always been taught that fiction — well, good fiction — should never stop the action for lengthy descriptions, especially in the beginning of the book, where you're trying to hook the reader. Descriptions can be worked into the action (i.e. I tugged on my dark blue sweatshirt instead of I was wearing a dark blue sweatshirt) to give the reader a visual picture without stopping everything for it.
Another thing that bothered me was a fake Vanity Fair article the main character/narrator reads in the beginning of the book. Granted, I don't read Vanity Fair, but this article just didn't sound to me at all like a genuine feature. I'm guessing the author doesn't have any experience as a journalist.
There's some really good chick lit out there, but so far I'm thinking this book is just not one of them. However, I rarely ever stop reading a book partway through, so I'm going to keep reading. After all, some of the best books out there start off unspectacularly!