I finished reading The Necklace: Thirteen Women and the Experiment that Transformed Their Lives, and do you think I will ever EVER permanently learn whether or not the word "that" is capitalized in a title? I am thinking not. ("Not ever learn," not "not capitalized.") It doesn't help that I don't even know if subtitles are supposed to be capitalized at all---or part of the book title. Hey, did you know I started college as an English major?
Anyway, I finished this book we will now call The Necklace, and that means I have already doubled my predicted success with my book stack.
The story starts with a good idea: a baker's dozen of women decide it's silly to spend tens of thousands of dollars on a diamond necklace they'd only wear a few times a year, so why not go in on one together and share it? This is the kind of idea that immediately makes me feel like copying. I want YOU AND ME to buy a diamond necklace and share it!!
But the book itself. Em. The author is so butt-kissy, it's good there are plenty of photos or you'd think you could never belong to this sort of group because you were not enough of a MOVIE-STAR-GORGEOUS HARDBODY at age 60. The group photo shows thirteen perfectly normal and nice women, but the author describes each as looking like Téa Leoni, having cascading blond waves, looking twenty years younger, not having a single wrinkle, etc. It's...weird.
And things are just as weird with the descriptions of the experiment itself. This is not just a cool idea, this is a TRANSFORMATIVE CONCEPT. It's not just fun to share the necklace, it's LIFE-CHANGING. It's not interesting that the necklace-sharing led to the women developing friendships and doing some fundraising together, it's ASTONISHING AND WORLD-ALTERING. Letting other people wear the necklace for a few minutes isn't just letting other people wear the necklace for a few minutes, it's SPREADING A NEW WAY TO THINK ABOUT POSSESSIONS.
Meanwhile, it sounds like a pretty miserable set-up. There is a lot of talk about how the necklace IMPROVED SEX LIVES and RESTORED SELF-ESTEEM and RAISED BAMBI'S MOTHER FROM THE DEAD, but what I mostly noticed was that no one could agree on what was supposed to be the point of the group, or of the necklace, or of sharing the necklace, nor could anyone agree what the rules should be. Furthermore, the details of why some women dropped out of the group and were replaced by others is sort of glossed over. Also, they named the necklace "Jewelia" (Julia) and refer to it as "her." *HUGE EYE ROLL*
In the first chapter, I was thinking, "OMG WE SHOULD TOTALLY DO THIS. Okay, maybe not with a diamond necklace, but with SOMETHING!!" and by the last I was thinking, "Okay, so it's like every other women's group ever, but with a sparkly prop."
Life-improving products, part 4 - (Continued from part 1, part 2, and part 3.) Stearns Youth Life Vest (photo from Amazon.com). I’d been too scared to take the kids to any body of water oth...