This isn’t a review of Bergdorf Blondes by Plum Sykes. If this were an actual review lights illuminated on the floor would guide you to the nearest exit.
THE NEW YORK TIMES online edition has a feature which enables readers to enjoy excerpts from selected titles. Yesterday I chanced upon BERGDORF BLONDES by Plum Sykes. The internet is too easy. I clicked on the link and began to read Chapter One.
I probably would not have done this in a bookstore for fear of encountering someone who helped educate me. one of those moments of horror that movies are so fond of.
The fact is that like most writers I’m dealing with jealousy, tinged with rejection neurosis. Pick me, I plead. Don’t pick Plum. She has a job!
The more subtle conspiracy oriented question is why did the NYT choose to highlight this novel and not another? If I’m going to be caught in a book store by Miss Ricketts I want to be leafing through De Senucte or Milton or at least holding Ulysses upside down.
Anyway I gleaned this much in about two pages. Bergdorf is a character, not a store. It costs her $495 every thirteen days to maintain her blondness through a process called a ‘touch-up.’ The author named the individual who renders this service, but I forget the name. The prose is ‘breezy.’ It’s pulse pounding, a veritable high speed chase through the savage netherworld of being not only blond, but the precise shade of blond this netherworld requires.
It’s not easy being this blond. That’s on page two, I think.
I was plumb tuckered by page three. $495! Every thirteen days. She could watch all the ESPN channels for that kind of money and probably get HBO too.
This is not a review. You can’t read two pages of a novel and write a review. I tried not to wonder what might happen if she went fourteen days between treatments. Novelists know how to build tension. I know I was tense after reading the excerpt. I was a little worried about the future of mankind, but things are looking up. Pam Anderson’s new novel is in bookstores now.
Concerned about dumbing down? I think the eagle has landed.