Marrying George Clooney. That’s the dream. And each time he ties the knot, many women’s hopes die down. Every time he separates, he rekindles those hopes. Then he shatters them again by remarrying.
This may not make much sense to the unenlightened or ignorant. To all such people, George Clooney has been voted as PEOPLE’s Sexiest Man Alive in 1997 and 2006, with his now amazing grey hair, suave charm and those big beautiful eyes. He has to be the most popular crush, celebrity and otherwise, across gender and same gender. There is no way he can’t possibly be. Just no way. At best, only Adam Levine can tie with him.
Now I believe everyone can appreciate the title of the book. It is of utmost importance to do so, otherwise it would feel incredibly silly.
At the center of this story is Michelle. She is thirty six, a single mother of fifteen year old Josie, who is about to turn 16 on Christmas Eve. Michelle conceived Josie when she was 21, after she had sex with the father; whom Josie doesn’t reveal to anybody.
At 21, Michelle was young, energetic and ambitious, all set to be a chef. She had big dreams for herself. She became pregnant, and with another incident in the family, she chose to give up on her dreams and raise the baby. She gave up on life. And fast forward, and she’s 36, working with in a chicken factory, with a fifteen year old daughter who doesn’t respect her one bit, neither does her daughter’s boyfriend; a mother who doesn’t value her and wishes she was more like her elder sister; and a father, the only bright light of support she has in her life.
Michelle’s life has become a rut and she is nothing like when she was 21. She constantly feels like a failure, gets stepped on by her daughter, has problems dealing with her mother and her life is bad. One day though, given a certain push, she decides she has to change.
The book is fresh, original and funny. It focuses on Michelle’s life, past and present and her ever present love for George Clooney; to whom she has written two letters in the novel.
It isn’t the clichéd hit the gym, get thin, get confident plot. It breaks many clichés in the genre. It is more of a face your troubles sort of transformation; written very differently from whatever I have ever read.
And it doesn’t get fake with the transformation of Michelle. She doesn’t go rom not respected mother to very well respected mother in an instant. She doesn’t stand up to her own mother with an outburst. She doesn’t go from hero to zero in an instant. It’s a book long process.
As a personal example, at my house, I’m not allowed to eat no-veg food on festivals, such as Diwali, Lori etc. My mother always enforces that. So, if by any I have a fight with my mother for not getting to eat non-veg or eggs for breakfast and I go out, even though I have the liberty to, I don’t eat non veg. My mom would never know I had non-veg, but I still don’t. And I know I won’t just one day start eating non-veg like this. It’s little things like these which this book get right.
Like I said, the book has healthy doses of humor here and there, so the book doesn’t become overwhelming with knowledge or get downright boring. Plus, it has a lot of wisdom. How, when you start following a dream, you need to take up challenges to achieve it. Those challenges change you, little by little, if you’re willing to accept them.
It’s been a month now since I first devoured this book. Honestly, I’m thinking of picking it up after my next two conquests, “The Men who stare at Goats” and “Kafka on the Shore”. This book I easily one of the funniest and lightest books I’ve read.