Nice is Just a Place in France
I was optimistic as I began reading this one. The first few pages suggested that the book would offer a collection of truths, replacing conventional wisdom with sarcastic, yet helpful, alternatives. I was convinced that I would come away with a sense of empowerment and badassery. Unfortunately, my hopes and dreams were soon shattered.
Early on, I strived to stay positive. I remember appreciating the Zoolander-inspired quote cleverly placed on page 5, “We’re just a few girls who realized that there’s more to life than being really, really ridiculously good-looking.” Soon after, the inclusion of Don Draper’s cheekiness also kept me intrigued: “You want some respect? Go out there and get it for yourself.”
Despite a few welcomed quotes, I found myself scrounging to find noteworthy segments throughout the book. There was a point where I felt I could no longer keep reading; this book was proving to be nothing more than a waste of my time. The thought crossed my mind that perhaps it should have been titled “A Step by Step Guide to Becoming a Lowlife.”
I kept reassuring myself that there was no way it could continue in such a monotonous and ridiculous manner. Do I think we should do as the authors suggest and have a good time in our twenties? Heck yes! However, I think this is better approached from a “work hard, play hard” stand-point as opposed to their “do nothing, starve, and blackout” angle.
Don’t get me wrong, I love an edgy, limit-pushing sense of humour. I fucking love Amy Schumer. But this book wasn’t consistently clever enough to be funny. I’m not just saying that because I have had my moments of being a “nice girl,” which is the type of young woman the authors have coined as being only useful for hibernating at the bottom of the barrel.
I felt as though I was constantly waiting for the next page or chapter to prove me wrong. I mean, there were amusing nuggets scattered throughout the book, which allowed me to be pleasantly surprised once in a while, “Of course it’s a gateway drug, a gateway to greatness.” Tidbits like this made me giggle.
Honestly, I felt like I was in a toxic relationship with this book. As soon as my attention was caught by an awesome piece of advice, the authors would throw another piece of pretentious and irritating bullshit my way.
The last fifteen or so pages proved to be solid enough; they positively reinforced the significance of women understanding their value. They also highlighted the importance of maintaining confidence and self-love, “In the end, the best relationships are with yourself.”
In retrospect, it’s my own fault for not taking the time to read the back cover before making this purchase. The “DON’T BE EASY. DON’T BE POOR. DON’T BE UGLY” part likely would have been enough to set off my internal alarm bells. In the end, I didn’t absolutely hate this read, but I’m still wondering how this book became a New York Times Bestseller. Did everyone forget to read the back before buying it?