14 June 2013

Book Review: Revenge Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger

"Everything’s in place for the season’s hottest launch:

Tall latte (with two raw sugars)? Check.

Gucci trench (draped over desk)? Check.

Outrageous, unreasonable demands? Check.

Andy has just turned thirty and is an incredibly successful magazine editor, working closely with her best friend Emily, another Runway survivor. She’s about to get married – life’s on track and she’s been careful to stay clear of Miranda Priestly, her dreadful first boss. But Andy’s luck is running out. Miranda Priestly isn’t the kind of woman who hides in the background.

She’s back… and more devilish than ever."

Rating: 3.5/5

You can pre-order Revenge Wears Prada as a paperback or an eBook now.

I read The Devil Wears Prada a good few years ago now, and I really enjoyed it. However, I have to confess that I did enjoy the hit movie starring Meryl Streep and Anne Hathaway a little bit more than I did the book, and to this day can't think of Miranda Priestly, the horrible Devil magazine editor from the book, without picturing Meryl in the role. When I heard Lauren Weisberger was bringing back the characters for a second novel, I was slightly worried that it might taint the brilliance of the first story, but I was also looking forward to having these characters back again, especially Andy who I loved reading about last time. I was so disappointed with the new cover, it's very bland and not my cup of tea, but of course I couldn't resist getting stuck in the moment it arrived through my letterbox!

At the end of the last book The Devil Wears Prada, Andy had screamed obscenities at her boss Miranda Priestly in Paris, and consequently cost herself her job. This book picks up Andy's story 10 years after leaving Runway magazine, and she's certainly made a success of herself. Together with her former Runway colleague Emily, the pair have created and now run their own weddings magazine, The Plunge. Couple that with the fact she's about to marry one of the shareholders and her own Mr Right in Max, it seems everything is going right for Andy. But just as she thinks life is perfect, it seems her past has come back to haunt her. Miranda is back, and Andy is determined that she won't let that woman back into her life again. But she's up against the odds - how will Miranda aka The Devil destroy her life this time, and will Andy come through it a better woman?

I was so excited to see more of the Miranda vs Andy clashes, but if you're expecting a lot of that in this book, I'm afraid you're going to be sorely disappointed. In fact, I was left disappointed with how little of Miranda was in the book as a whole. She doesn't appear in any big scenes, at first it's just glimpses of her, but even by the end, there haven't been any major "Miranda incidents" as there are throughout the first book, so it kind of makes the title a bit of a mystery too. Yes, Miranda is back, but, well, not really. She isn't nice, she's still ruthless but we do get to see a different side to her, and it just seemed very odd to me. I was constantly awaiting something huge to happen, but it never materialises, and while I enjoyed the story as a whole and reading about Andy again, the lack of Miranda and her "revenge" was a huge let down.

Andy is the book has certainly grown up in the book, is ready to get married to Max and is a successful magazine editor in her own right, but I have to say I did want her to grow a bit more of a backbone in the book! She was far too nice for my liking, not willing to put her own point of view above anyone else's, especially Emily's, and it did start to grate on my nerves after a while. I enjoyed reading the development of her marriage to Max and the other developments that happen to her, and the celebrities and scenarios she finds herself in through her job are fun to read about. I also liked the mentions of designers and clothes, which were frequent throughout the book but didn't seem too over-the-top which was good, and of course Andy and Emily had an appearance to uphold!

For me, this book was far more about Andy and her journey at this point in her life than about anything to do with Miranda. Yes, the devil does come back, but not in the way a lot of readers will be hoping for, and I have to confess I was left surprised by the final few chapters and what occurs there. I can't imagine this book turning into a big Hollywood movie as the first one did, simply because people would demand more of Miranda than is included in it. Weisberger is a good writer that can draw you into a story and make you care about her characters, but I have to question the title and lack of Miranda Priestly - let's be honest, she is going to be the reason most people will want to read this, and to find out what her revenge is going to be. I enjoyed it for what it was; an enjoyable read about a woman moving on with her life in New York despite a few wobbles, but for those hoping for The Devil Wears Prada part 2, I'm afraid you might be left disappointed.

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