This was a nope for me. I needed something to read to break up my Halloween reads and I was promised a hilarious send up of being a single girl/woman serial wedding guest. As someone who is that single friend at weddings I was ready for it. Weddings have been on my mind lately (you guys hear about that plantation wedding thing? Sigh) so I thought this would be a nice read in between horror. Too bad this book was not good.
Jen Doll's book bounces all over the place, but I can honestly say she sounds like a pain in the ass as awedding guest, girlfriend, and friend. You don't need enemies with her around. I have unfortunately met this type of girl at weddings before. It's like a bat signal goes up. You can always tell the one that is going to drink too much, get nasty, and or mad if people are not paying her any attention. I hard cringed reading this book.
Jen provides readers with details/memories of significant weddings in her life. She even goes into her parents (she wasn't present) and while providing details on the wedding, will intersperse that with details about the bride, groom, and wedding guests. I pretty much only liked hearing about her parents and was curious about her childhood since she mentions her family moving around a lot. I was also doubly curious about her growing up in the south.
She wrote for a lot of well known magazines like The Atlantic, Cosmopolitan, The Village Voice, and others. So she can definitely write. That's not the problem.
I think the problem is that she made herself the anti-hero in her own story. You will probably come away with not liking her very much and or thinking she may have a problem with alcohol. She even gets into a fight with an ex-friend's husband at a wedding and he goes of course Jen is drinking again which to me shows that a lot of people think she drinks a lot.
I think most of these stories center around Jen and how the weddings and people made her feel. I just don't know if she got or understood that unless you are the bride, you don't make a wedding about you. She revisits one awful wedding where she got drunk and hit friends of hers that were trying to take her back to her hotel room. I just cringed inside while reading. She claims to have blocked things out because she doesn't want to remember, but yeah I bet she does. God knows I remember every dumb ass thing I have done too. When you think she has finally learned her lesson, she goes to a wedding with a guy who sounds interesting/shows promise, and then flips out because he's not paying enough attention to her. I would have cursed her out and went about my day.
My rules for attending weddings:
1. Are you the bride? No. Then shut up and be helpful and make sure you don't cause drama.
As someone who has been a maid of honor at a destination wedding (what a pain the ass that was) and was also in my brother's wedding I can tell you that I was thrilled when my last two friends who got married did not ask me to be a bridesmaid. I don't get hurt by it, and don't give two craps. That means I can chill all day til the ceremony, then make sure I bring something to snack on in the car on the way to the reception. And then I will smile, toast, take pictures, be helpful (once was in the bathroom for an hour untangling a friend's long ass train) and go back to my room and sleep away til the next day.
I think without realizing it, that Jen's inability to put her friend's first caused some of them to not turn away from her, but towards the end of the book, she was just a guest and not in the wedding parties for some of the girls who were in wedding parties with her before. Frankly, I don't blame the brides, who wants that headache?
The sections that made me die the most inside though was Jen going into her friend's Ginny's marriage and being mad that Ginny wouldn't leave her husband cause Jen didn't like him. It didn't sound abusive, it just sounded like the guy was kind of a dick. I just don't know why she was so overly involved in it. It just sounded like drama and she was feeding on it. Ginny gets brought up throughout this book, so you don't know what happened at first, but we eventually get there. And even after the friendship is broken, Jen can't help poking at it like a scab. I can see why the mutual friends were tired of it.
I was hoping for more of a girl power book (being happy being single and attending weddings solo) and having some funny remembrances that occurred at weddings. This book was totally not what I though it was going to be.