So last night, I got to meet Jen Lancaster!! Her newest book (and her first novel), If You Were Here, just came out and she was on a book tour and stopped in Pittsburgh. I got there a little late (thanks, traffic) so I was standing in the back of the group and couldn’t really see her during the reading/Q&A session. If you’ve read any of her books, she seems just as awesome and hilarious as she is in her books. And super cute and preppy-looking, too. She was a real trouper and signed the book of every person in line (I also ended up toward the back of the line and it took me almost 2 hours to get to her!) and made sure to chit-chat and get pics with everyone who wanted one.
Jen Lancaster and Jaci
Jen's signature in my book
I am so kicking myself now, though. See, Jen talks about in her books how when she’s around a celebrity, she starts to talk their ear off and tries to touch their hair. Her interaction with Alec Baldwin was the best, though (read “My Fair Lazy” to find out what I’m talking about!). But when I get in front of someone famous (or even semi-famous like a local news personality), I freeze up and can’t even get words out. What I WISH I would have mentioned to her was: 1) that I have this blog and I’ve read all of her books within the past few months and love her, and 2) that she inspired me from her book “Such a Pretty Fat” to join a gym and get a personal trainer; if she could do it, so could I. But…. I’m a wimp and just made some comment about the spelling of my name because she mispronounced it and said something about being glad they gave us (the ones in the back of the line) chairs. Yes, I’m a loser. Either way, it was really awesome to see hear her talk and get to meet her for 60 seconds.
Here are my short summaries of her books (all but the newest one are memoirs) since I don’t want this post to be TOO long (and it’s best if you read in chronological order, as listed below) –
“Such a Pretty Fat: One Narcissist’s Quest to Discover If Her Life Makes Her Ass Look Big, Or, Why Pie Is Not the Answer”: Jen proposes an idea for a new book: a memoir about her journey to lose weight. Once it is accepted by her publisher, she realizes she actually has to DO it. She hires a personal trainer named Barbie (just imagine how that turns out) and goes on a number of different diets. This is the book that pushed me to get off the couch and join a gym and try to eat better. At her signing last night, someone asked if she still sees Barbie (which she doesn’t, she moved away) and Jen stated that she has realized it is more enjoyable NOT to go to the gym.
Don’t pay attention to the reviews on Amazon and Goodreads. I agree that maybe she’s not everyone’s taste, but Jen Lancaster is freakin’ hilarious. She’s snarky, sarcastic, snotty, and sometimes inappropriate, but she sure is entertaining. She tends to say and do those things that you think in your head but would never actually do. Need some good beach reads for this summer? Pick up some of her books. You might get some looks when you start laughing out loud while reading them, but it’s worth it. Her books are a “guilty pleasure”, some would say.
I’m looking forward to reading her newest book and will blog about it when I’m done!