Many little girls grow up with the modelling of a couple of adults in their own home. It is reasonable then to expect that, after having grown up, chosen a job, developed friendships and done a great amount of exploring and travelling, they look toward marriage and a family. But times have changed and, in New York and other parts of the world, there are not enough men to allow this to happen. The author decides to explore this idea, and does so in a humorous and authentic way.
Liz tells a story about Julie and four of her friends. As we become acquainted with the women, we realise that each of them is an individual who has particular issues. All of them wish to meet a man and settle down and prepare for motherhood. Julie works for a Publishing house as a publicist, and is the one the women look to for help.
Georgia is recently separated and has two young children. She is enraged that her husband has left them, and wants Julie to organise an evening for her to have a night on the town. Ruby suffers from depression, and volunteers at a dog shelter, where she makes sure the dogs being put down, get a last hug from her. Alice is a beautiful and intelligent woman who is a lawyer, and Serena joins a meditation centre.
All the women are seeking to come to terms with their singleness. The chapters are called Rules, and the first chapter is “RULE 1, Make sure you have friends.” The friends all go to some bars (with Georgia dancing on the bar waving her bra around), but in the end, it is the same as every other night out, when they come home together.
As their lives progress, and they each feel a degree of helplessness, Julie decides to do some research. She asks her boss if she can write a book about single women all around the world. When she is given permission, she travels around, meeting women and talking to them. It is fascinating, and believable information that she gathers.
The first women Julie speaks to are French. When she asks them what they do on a date, they reply “We don’t date.” They explain that they go out for drinks, but would NEVER call a man. Pride is taught to these women from an early age, and is taken for granted.
The Italian women interviewed slap a lot. They were quite shocked when they discovered that Julie had never slapped a man! It is in Rome that Julie meets a French man who has an “open marriage.” The only rule is, he and his wife may only be a way for two weeks, and then they must return home.
As Julie travels around the world, sometimes with her friends and sometimes alone, she discovers more customs and fascinating insights into the life of single women.
The humour and reality that the author brings to this book, will keep you reading and smiling. There is no manufactured ending to this work, but each of the characters moves forward, discovering the amazing importance of friendships, each becoming a little less precious about their own personal situation.
If the film is true to the book, it should be a cracker, and I can’t wait to see it.
|Publisher||Simon & Schuster UK|
|Distributor||Simon And Schuster|
|Released||re-release film tie in February 2016|