Saturday, December 11, 2010
I’m a massive fan of Chick Lit. There – my secret (or not so secret) is out. While part of me really thinks I should be curling up in bed with War and Peace, Jane Austen or Dr Zhivago, after a long hard day at the office, there is nothing I like more than the prospect of curling up with something not too hard or challenging.
This book meets that brief perfectly. Written by Jessica Rudd (Kevin’s daughter) the somewhat unbelievable but witty storyline sees our heroine, Ruby “Roo” Stanhope, accidentally booking herself on a flight from London to Australia after consuming two bottles of very good Australian Pinot Noir on the worst day of her life. The muddles and situations she finds herself thereafter are implausible but humorous – being offered a job on a political campaign as a financial policy advisor 4 hours after arriving in a country she knows nothing about with no experience, no visa, no local contacts and often no clothes was a bit hard to fathom but Jessica’s turn of phrase and the speed of the campaign trail kept this story moving forward at a terrific pace.
For all its pitfalls, issues and remarkable coincidences, Campaign Ruby is an entertaining read. Full of colloquialisms it does portray Australians as, for the most part, ocker 2 dimensional characters and larrikins but if you put that and the implausible storyline aside, Ruby is a genuinely likeable character that has a passion for good shoes and clothes and a love of a good glass of wine – exactly my kind of girl. There are characters are very well written, especially Ruby’s niece Clem who has all the best lines in the book by my estimation, but there are others where you are left wondering about their appeal, particularly Ruby’s love interest Luke. It’s not that he’s not appealing, he’s just a little flat and, well, as I previously mentioned, 2 dimensional. I have to say it’s hard to see the attraction sometimes.
Putting all that aside, Campaign Ruby is as light, refreshing and effervescent as a nice cold glass of moscato on a hot summer’s day. It’s definitely a good summer read and something that fans of Sophie Kinsella and Helen Fielding wouldn’t be disappointed receiving and devouring with a box of Lindt balls and a nice glass of “Peanut Noise” on Christmas Day.
by Jessica Rudd
Available at all good booksellers – Borders online price $29.95.