December 2, 2023

Kiddie (Free) Lit

Ever wonder...

Doing my best Andy Rooney impersonation:

Did you ever notice how almost every book for women these days is about weddings and babies? I remember when women couldn’t even have books.

OK enough with the old man voice. I’ve been noticing a recurring theme with many of my steamy beach reads that is not so sexy – the main characters can’t decide if they should have kids or NOT! The stories are not the fun and tempting reads that the back cover teases. These fence-sitting literary couples struggle to find themselves and survive debt, betrayal and various inane obstacles only to come together and live happily ever after. Then they go and ruin things by making baby plans.

The two chick-lit novels below include the “Should we? Or shouldn’t we?” theme:
Baby Proof by Emily Giffen

Fans love her sorbet colored titles on marriage and the great void that happens next. In this story, Ben, the husband who vowed he’d live a childfree life suddenly wakes up one day and – yikes — changes his mind. Now what?
Nanny Returns by Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus

Four million readers loved The Nanny Diaries but when Nanny returned more people went meh? Not so much. Nan is back and fate has her crossing paths with her former charges, but can she handle a little cutie pie of her own? And will it tear her against-all-odds relationship apart?

A friend of mine mentioned that the childfree conundrum makes an appearance in Freedom by Jonathan Franzen. (A pre-Oprah Book Club copy is sitting on my shelf.) Franzen would likely freak out if he discovered his name on the same page as “beach read” or “chick lit” or “books for women”. Which brings me back to Andy Rooney…

Did you ever notice that people without kids have way too much time to read books?