|Photo taken by Ms. C.|
Pear-Shaped is about Sophie, an English girl, who meets and falls in love with James, a man who is completely and utterly bad for her sanity. James is an older and slightly overweight man who has a history of dating models and fraternizes with a host of womanizing men. Newman's tale focuses on the turbulent relationship between Sophie and James.
I am torn with this book. Newman's writing is, at times, hilariously funny. I think many people can relate to Sophie's story - a girl who falls in love with the wrong man. Newman is able to depict Sophie's dilemmas in an entertaining, engaging, and funny way. However, most of the time I wanted to slap her characters. Why?
Sophie spends a great deal of the book complaining about the size of her body and how James continually degrades her physical attributes. There is only so much "hips - too wide. Stretch marks on hips. Bottom - very large. Flabby. Cellulite - on thighs. Unacceptable" comments that a reader can endure.* And the worst part? Sophie returns to James after every incident of his mental and emotional abuse. The book climaxes as Sophie eventually comes to terms with her relationship and questions what matters most in her life.
I would be leery in recommending this book to others. I found that it was dark and disheartening at times. However, this is the book for you if you don't mind hearing a woman continually call herself ugly and fat... degradation at its finest.
* Quote from p 114.
Newman, S. (2011). Pear-shaped. London: Avon.