book club - lipstick jungle


Lipstick Jungle (2005)

In “Lipstick Jungle,” Bushnell’s fourth novel, Bushnell explores our assumptions about gender roles in family and career. The book follows three high-powered friends as they weather the ups and downs of lives lived at the top of their game. Salon magazine called Bushnell’s work “ahead of the curve,” and once again, with “Lipstick Jungle,” Bushnell captures the paradigm of a new breed of career woman facing modern challenges and choices.
i really enjoyed 'sex & the city' the novel.  and i really really enjoyed 'sex & the city' the program.  but then i read a few of candace bushnell's other novels and felt they were missing... something.  missing the "it" factor that made s&tc what it was, novel and show.  missing the magic.

so i took a break from seeking out bushnell's work and instead enjoyed other authors.

but then many many months ago while dog sitting one weekend at jenn's i was gorging myself of netflix goodness and puppy cuddles and i started watching and really REALLY liking 'lipstick jungle'.  similar premise, thirty something powerful women living in new york navigating careers, romance, motherhood and FASHION {my gosh, the fashion} all with the support of their very different but amazing female friends.  but it worked.  it really worked.  and it was based on candace bushnell's novel of the same name.

i recently found the paperback on the discount rack at the grocery store and thought "why not?" and started reading with the expectation that i would enjoy the story as i did the program.  stories of personal growth, careers, motherhood, romance, sex and friendship with the glamorous backdrop of the publishing business/fashion business/some other kind of glamour business.

and i did enjoy it.  mostly.

but there were moments when i wanted so badly to punch the faces of these women that i had to put the book down for a bit.  here were three extremely hardworking and successful women utterly failing in the areas of confidence, time management, priorities, morality and most importantly common sense.  i cannot elaborate because their individual  stories take arcs that would necessitate spoilers and spoilers just suck but let me tell you there were some giant huge major FAILS in some of the decisions these supposedly intelligent women make.

also, the ending kind of wrapped everything up very quickly and with a pretty bow which didn't really hold weight with some of the grittier subject matters.  loveless marriage, divorce, affairs, child custody, career advancement, morals, ethics... you know, the important stuff.  meh.

allllso, as i was reading i kept thinking "these stories don't sound familiar" and "i've never heard this character's name before" and "wtf is happening" because i kept thinking about the television show i really liked which actually turned out to be titled 'cashmere mafia'.

i've never seen an episode of 'lipstick jungle' in my life.