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Kiki Overthinks Every Thing
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Kiki Overthinks Every Thing
April 15, 2006
What A Chick-Lit Novel Should Be
Mood:  a-ok
Now Playing: The Booster by Jennifer Solow
Topic: Book Reviews
The Booster is an excellent, page-turning and morally ambiguous debut novel by Jennifer Solow. Solow’s protagonist is a Jewish American Princess named Jillian Laurel Siegel—a mess of a woman who hides her inner turmoil by keeping a cold and distant demeanor. (A prescription for an anti-anxiety drug helps Jillian keep her distance from even those she loves.) Whenever she is forced to reveal anything about herself, Jillian lies. She not only tells white lies, but big whopping fibs. She doesn’t know how to be truthful, even to herself.

Jillian also has another problem. She’s a chronic shoplifter, a.k.a. a booster. Because of her upbringing as an indulged child by her rich uncle and his gay lover, Jillian walks around with deep sense of entitlement. It is a sense of entitlement that minorities in the United States believe that white people consciously or subconsciously have. At its least, it is an annoying trait. At its worst, it brings on severe feelings of contempt. Once the reader is drawn deeper into Jillian’s neurosis, we begin to sympathize with her. She is addicted to shoplifting as some people are addicted to alcohol or drugs. It narcotizes the pain that is felt from feeling unloved; being a disappointed to one's self; having low self-esteem; and sometimes from dealing with mental disorders such as depression and bi-polar disorder.

The imminent death of her beloved uncle and the loss of her job send Jillian into a downward spiral. She makes her first true friend, who lures her into a deeper life of crime. Jillian must now find the strength within her self to break free and move on with her life, but can she do it? Can Jillian find the help she needs and shake her armor of entitlement to make a sacrifice? I won’t spill the ending, which in true Chick-Lit fashion, wraps up pretty nicely.

The one downside of The Booster is the liberal use of Yiddish between Jillian and her family. Native New Yorkers will get most of the phrases, as we’ve adopted some of them in our own every day lexicon, but the non-Jewish reader will not know the difference from Shalom and Shabbat.
(For help with the Yiddish phrases, I recommend

Posted by Kiki Shoes at 11:10 AM EDT | Post Comment | View Comments (1) | Permalink
Updated: May 20, 2006 3:26 PM EDT

July 8, 2006 - 3:31 AM EDT

Name: "farzina"
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Perfect site! Anything superfluous, all is laconic and beautiful. Thanks!

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