From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Clique series comes a novel about the importance of friendship, and, of course, the pleasure of a dirty book.
M.J. Stark’s life is picture-perfect—she has her dream job as a magazine editor, a sexy doctor boyfriend, and a glamorous life in New York City. But behind her success, there is a debilitating sense of loneliness. So when her boss betrays her and her boyfriend offers her a completely new life in California, she trades her cashmere for caftans and gives it a try.
Once there, M.J. is left to fend for herself in a small beach town, with only the company of her elderly neighbor, Gloria, and an ocean that won’t shut up. One afternoon, M.J. discovers that Gloria has suddenly moved to Paris with her friends to honor a fifty-year-old pact. And in lieu of a goodbye, she’s left a mysterious invitation to a secret club—one that only reads erotic books.
Curious, M.J. accepts and meets the three other hand-selected club members. As they bond over naughty bestsellers and the shocking letters they inherited from the original club members, the four strangers start to divulge the intimate details of their own lives… and as they open up, they learn that friendship might just be the key to rewriting their own stories: all they needed was to find each other first.
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The Dirty Book Club by Lisi Harrison
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
The Dirty Book Club by Lisi Harrison is a 2017 Gallery Books publication.
A lighthearted and often hilarious story about the special bonds of friendship!
Now, don’t let the title of this book fool you. This is not an erotic novel, at all. Instead, this is a book about relationships, focusing on the bond between women and true, enduring friendship.
The story begins in 1962 with the birth of ‘The Dirty Book Club’. A group of friends, all of whom have a different set of circumstances to cope with, form a secret book club, replete with certain rituals, and meet by the schedule of the full moon, to discuss the latest ‘erotic’ novel.
Fast forward to present day New York, where MJ is about to see her career dreams come true after a devastating loss that has left her bereft and riddled with guilt. But, at the last minute, her boss pulls the rug out from under her by assigning her a co- editor. This is not the way things were supposed to go. In a fit of temper, MJ quits her job, and accepts her boyfriend’s invitation to come live with him in California.
But, MJ soon finds herself bored and having an all -out pity party for herself. However, she does form an acquaintance with her boyfriend’s neighbor, Gloria. But, when Gloria suddenly departs for Paris, she leaves a note behind inviting MJ to join a secret and exclusive book club - one that only reads erotic novels. Unable to resist, MJ accepts the invitation and meets the three other carefully selected members of the club.
This eclectic group of women, as with Gloria and her lifelong friends, are all going through various trials in life. They reluctantly bond with each other and soon discover the real secrets behind ‘The Dirty Book Club’.
To be completely honest, this book is not deep, neither in plot or characterization, but in this instance, it’s not a big deal. Why? Well, sometimes I just want to read a story that has a minimal amount of angst, that can touch lightly upon a few darker topics without becoming heavy or depressing. Sometimes I need a break from romance or thrillers and just want to lose myself in a quirky ‘feel good’ story that makes me laugh out loud and lifts my spirits.
I also found the ‘erotic reading list’ very interesting, and occasionally nostalgic. Boy, have times changed since Gloria and the gang read Erica Jong’s ‘Fear of Flying’. Even if you snub erotica, you will find this list of reading material intriguing.
I did wish a few things had come together differently, but, overall, this book was just plain fun, thoroughly enjoyable, and serves as a reminder of how friendships can enhance our lives.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Lisi Harrison is the author of the #1 NYT Bestselling Clique, Alphas, Monster High and Pretenders series. Her first adult novel, The Dirty Book Club will be released October 10, 2017. She was senior director of Development at MTV and also served as head writer for MTV Productions.
Lisi lives in Laguna Beach, California and has been a proud member of her own dirty book club since 2007.
She posts a new blog every Wednesday at LisiHarrison.com