Satirist or Socialite? Plum Sykes Drops Names, Goes to Brazil

To: HenriettaBendel@blahblah.com

From: JoyOShopping@villagevoice.com

Re: Bergdorf Blondes

Just finished reading Plum Sykes's novel. Since I know you don't read books (Lucky doesn't count), I figured I'd fill you in. But you better be grateful—this thing is over 300 pages and a little too much like hard work, which should be shunned at all costs.

You remember Plum, right? She and her sister were "It" girls before Paris and Nikki. She writes for fashion magazines, just like the novel's narrator—except in the book she doesn't usually finish articles because she has so much personal drama distracting her. One time she skips out on an assignment to go to a Chanel sample sale, but then her gorgeous photographer boyfriend (who sounds kinda like Sykes's artistic ex Damian Loeb) dumps her because she's too shallow. So she has a breakdown. Luckily her friend Julie Bergdorf—yes, that Bergdorf!—sends her to a doctor. It's the funniest scene in the book: The guy's not a shrink, he's a dermatologist. As Julie explains, "You can tell Dr. F. everything. Five percent of the time he's injecting, the rest of the time he just listens." I wonder if he's listed in the phone book, like those other real shops and restaurants she raves about. Do you think she got paid for product placement, or is that too tacky?

I learned a lot (like what designers' muses do all day), but there's just too much shopping and not enough fucking for a juicy read. Sex and the City, without the sex. The narrator apparently does get some action, but she calls it "going to Brazil" (as in the bikini wax) and won't dish details. Possibly 'cause she's British. Or maybe Bergdorf Blondes isn't supposed to be trashy, but social satire. You know, like Clueless?

 
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