Just Another Bougie Black Girl Memoir? Bitch is the New Black

6 Jan

Interim Book Review: Bitch is the New Black

Progress  – 89% complete. I wouldn’t normally write a review without completing the book, but I wanted to put down some of my initial thoughts. I’ll follow up with a review of the bookclub meeting that’s scheduled for Sunday.

I’m cheating on my current bookclub with my Best Friend’s Bookclub.  I’m scrambling to finish Bitch is the New Black by Helena Andrews. I’ve been looking for a reason to read this book. It was all the rage and garnered a lot of attention in DC and amongst my bougie crowd. I’m bougie, I’ll admit it.


The book started a little rough for me. I don’t know whether it was odd chapter titles, or that she recreated computer conversations complete with time stamps, or the fact that she tried to avoid using an expletive and replaced it with “Fock.” But most people I talked to said they just couldn’t follow the prose. It was too jumpy, all over the place, and not a cohesive story to follow.  I agreed. I hoped that their assessments wouldn’t impact my thoughts, or even the question guide my Best Friend wanted me to develop to lead our discussion.

But at one point, the question to me became….really, what’s remarkable about this book? It happened particularly when I questioned if one  of the guys she referred to dating was in fact one of my exes.  A lot of women I know could have this tale, this life, with a few tweeks. So, was this just another bougie black girl’s memoir?

That remains to be seen.

I’ll follow up after I finish the book.

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7 Responses to “Just Another Bougie Black Girl Memoir? Bitch is the New Black”

  1. sharay January 6, 2011 at 10:45 pm #

    I thought I was the only one! I can’t believe it’s being optioned for a film. To me, the writing was just alright. I was sorely disappointed and thought it would be much more than it was. I read some skipped around and finally took it back to the bookstore. There was just nothing spectacular about her stories and her writing wasn’t distinctive. I couldn’t pick up a voice from her. Meh.

    • Najeema January 7, 2011 at 1:52 pm #

      Thanks Sharay for your comments. Like I said, I was about 89% finished with the book when I wrote this post. Since then I’m about 92% complete, lol. So, I’ll reserve FINAL judgment for when I finish.

      I will say that I do believe I hear her ‘voice.’ Perhaps it’s just that they voice was a bit distracted or muddled.

      I bought the book in hardback, so….I’m happy that I was able to support a black author. I hope you come back and read the next post on the book.

  2. 05girl January 7, 2011 at 5:06 pm #

    Looking forward to the end-story review. It seemed like folks everywhere were praising this book, based on know-the-author bias or internet-hype-bias. I still have not read.

  3. EvolvingElle January 27, 2011 at 2:59 pm #

    I read the book. I admit it took me awhile to purchase (Amazon.com #FTW!) Helena and I have mutual friends, and like you Najeema, I wanted to support a black author, especially one who is young and female. Nothing about the book stood out to me. I didn’t particularly enjoy it; I’m still trying to figure out how the stories go with the title and how it’s going to be made into a film.

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