Romantic Comedy by Curtis Sittenfeld | #bookreview

About the book

Life is (not)* a Romantic Comedy…

With a series of heartbreaks under her belt, Sally Milz – successful script writer for a legendary late-night TV comedy show – has long abandoned the search for love.

But when her friend and fellow writer begins to date a glamorous actress, he joins the growing club of interesting but average-looking men who get romantically involved with accomplished, beautiful women. Sally channels her annoyance into a sketch, poking fun at this ‘social rule’. The reverse never happens for a woman.

Then Sally meets Noah, a pop idol with a reputation for dating models. But this isn’t a romantic comedy – it’s real life. Would someone like him ever date someone like her?

Skewering all our certainties about why we fall in love, ROMANTIC COMEDY is a witty and probing tale of how the heart will follow itself, no matter what anyone says. It is Curtis Sittenfeld at her most sharp, daring and compassionate best.

My Thoughts

I seem to be in the minority on this book in that I expected to love it but didn’t. I absolutely adored Eligible by the same author, a contemporary retelling of Pride & Prejudice. She’s clearly a clever and witty writer. For what it’s worth, here are my thoughts.

I’ll be honest and say it took me quite a while to get into this one. Most of the first half of the book, the first chapter, focussed on the ins and outs and the comedy sketch show The Night Owls. There was a lot of detail about coming up with the sketches, the writing process, how they were selected and so on. It was interesting to get an insight into this fast paced and high pressured world but it took a while for even a glimpse of a romance element to feature. It’s apparently clearly meant to be based on the tv show Saturday Night Live but, not being American, that passed me by.

The second chapter is made up of emails and I really enjoyed this part. It was much more like I was expecting, was entertaining and often funny. This chapter takes place in 2020, partly in lockdown, and Sally and Noah get to know each other more honestly through emails. They begin to find they quite like each other and perhaps had more in common than they thought. In chapter three, they decide to take a chance and meet up again. There’s a few days of bliss, of a normal relationship, before the paparazzi spots them. I could really see the challenge of being in a relationship with someone mega famous. This was an issue for Sally even though she was used to being around celebrities with her job on The Night Owls. I found myself despairing at Sally sometimes and wondering if the strain of being in the media would break them.

I felt this was a book of two halves. I really wasn’t keen on the first part at all but quite enjoyed the second part. As you’ll have gathered, this wasn’t a big hit for me. So many other people absolutely love it though so don’t let me put you off. Give it and go and let me know what you think.

Thanks to the publishers for my digital review copy from Netgalley.
Romantic Comedy is published by Transworld/Doubleday and available now

About the Author

Curtis Sittenfeld is the author of the Sunday Times and New York Times bestselling Rodham. Other novels include American Wife and Prep, both bestsellers and longlisted for the Orange Prize, The Man of My Dreams, SisterlandEligible, and the acclaimed short story collections You Think It, I’ll Say It and Help Yourself. Her stories have appeared in the New Yorker, Esquire, Oprah Magazine and the New York Times magazine. Sittenfeld was also the guest editor for the 2020 Best American Short Stories anthology. She lives with her family in the American Midwest. Follow her on Twitter @CSittenfeld

8 thoughts on “Romantic Comedy by Curtis Sittenfeld | #bookreview

    1. Well, as I say, I seem to be in the minority so you might really enjoy it. Although the reviews I’ve read where people aren’t so keen, in general it’s for the same reasons as me. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

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