Who's That Girl? - Mhairi McFarlane
When Edie is caught in a compromising position at her colleagues’ wedding, all the blame falls on her – turns out that personal popularity in the office is not that different from your schooldays. Shamed online and ostracised by everyone she knows, Edie’s forced to take an extended sabbatical – ghostwriting an autobiography for hot new acting talent, Elliot Owen. Easy, right?
Wrong. Banished back to her home town of Nottingham, Edie is not only dealing with a man who probably hasn’t heard the word ‘no’ in a decade, but also suffering an excruciating regression to her teenage years as she moves back in with her widowed father and judgy, layabout sister.
When the world is asking who you are, it’s hard not to question yourself. Who’s that girl? Edie is ready to find out.
My number one complaint about the last book I read by this author was the length. At 535 pages, it's my complaint for this one as well- SO much of this book could have been snipped out to take down the length and make it so much better. Mhairi is a great writer, the story is good and entertaining but when you have 500 some pages it's so easy for someone to put this book down and say enough is enough. I think so many people are going to pass this book up because of the size and that's a shame because the story itself is fun and entertaining.
The basics are we have Edie, who finds herself at the wedding of someone she works with, and she's had a weird, complicated, totally not good relationship with the groom. On the night of the wedding itself, the groom, in his total asshole-full-of-himself way kisses Edie and OF COURSE the bride sees, freaks the hell out, and Edie makes a run for her room because she's pretty sure she's going to barf. But cue the backlash- Edie is labeled as a homewrecker (and worse) through social media so she basically has to leave London because nobody is giving her the time of day. Her boss feels kind of bad for her so he gives her the lead on a chance to write the biography for a famous television star, which leads them to strike up an unlikely friendship. Not surprisingly, while Edie is basically tarred and feathered for being kissed, the groom is essentially given a pass, which is something that absolutely would happen in real life, so there's that to consider. But the larger talking point is the influence of social media in our lives, what's real online versus not online, and how something small that we post online can take on its own life so to speak.
Overall? I'll give this one 3/5 stars. It's the length of the novel that gets me. If it was 200 pages shorter, I think I would have enjoyed it far more. Maybe the fact my elbow went numb while reading this is impacting my rating here, but more isn't always better. But I really liked Edie, and I felt bad for her. All of the awkwardness at the beginning of the book- we have ALL been there. And once all hell breaks loose you just want to defend her because she didn't deserve what ultimately happens to her.
You can catch up with Mhairi McFarlane on her website and Twitter. You can get your own copy of Who's That Girl on Amazon now!