Monday, July 19, 2010

Pink Bra and Black Jacket by Rafaele Germain

4 Star

Chloe and her single friends Antoine and Juliette vowed to remain single and unmarried when they created the ‘Single Person’s Manifesto’. Years later Chloe starts to have doubts and wonders if it’s really the life she wants.  Her decision is met with resistance by her friends, but when she remains committed, it ripples through their threesome and other friends and family along the way.  Will she remain single and will she get the love she craves? 

Lydia - 4 Star

Don’t let the title or cover fool you and I didn’t really understand either while reading this novel - maybe I’m just getting used to the repackaged chick lit we’re seeing now, but it doesn’t matter much once you crack the cover. Pink Bra and Black Jacket was an amusing single girl read, full of interesting characters, tales of friendship, family and love and finding yourself along the way.

Pink Bra and Black Jacket was a light-hearted read chick lit read, but I found it held deeper moments. There were passages that had me nodding and pondering relationships, friendships, marriage and commitment. I felt Chloe’s confusion and found her desire to change believable.

The Single Person’s Manifesto was an interesting twist on single girl lit, but in the end this novel was about Chloe wanting love and her journey to find it. I did find her sister’s story a twist from the usual lighter chick lit fare and that one of her best friends was male was an interesting departure on typical chick lit.

I was rooting for Chloe and pulling for all the other characters along the way.  The supporting characters were all well drawn and I wanted to head over to Chloe’s parents for dinner.  It seemed like such a fun place to be as well as Marcus and Juliette’s loft.  The plot rolled along smoothly and I laughed out loud multiple times with this amusing, thought provoking novel.

I’m looking forward to more novels from Rafaele Germain!

Kathryn - 4 Star

I found this tale of single girl (and guy) chick lit completely fun and refreshing!  The fact that it was translated from French was noticeable at the beginning and occasionally throughout but it’s interesting to see that the feel one gets from a good chick lit novel can travel through translation- I would be interested to read the original French though to see if the title made any sense with the original wording?  Because in English I could not see how the title fit at all!

I know this may be silly, but I appreciated that our main character Chloe has three cats and that Germain gives each one of the cats a particular personality and role. Obviously therefore Chloe’s parents and sister are equally well thought out and integral to the plot.  I don’t think this novel would have worked without the supporting personalities and sub-plots as I did feel that the main story was a bit predictable and it’s the fact that there is so much warmth and depth between the relationships that makes their story completely lovable.  I was particularly impressed with there being a core friendship between three people where none of the other friends feels like they got lost in the plot.  Although Chloe is our main focus we are treated to equal knowledge about both Juliette and Antoine. 

I was a little disappointed with a couple of the details- for instance Simon’s parents are given some unusually sad and down trodden characteristics but these don’t seem to fit with a family that moved to France and back- you would expect people with higher spirits to make such a life move?  But maybe I’m just dwelling on a detail…

A very well thought out plot and storyline and I enjoyed Pink Bra and Black Jacket immensely!

Thank you to McArthur and Co. for our review copy. All opinions are our own.

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