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Bright Lights, Big Ass: A Self-Indulgent, Surly, Ex-Sorority Girl's Guide to Why it Often Sucks in the City, or Who are These Idiots and Why Do They All Live Next Door to Me? Paperback – May 1, 2007


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Bright Lights, Big Ass: A Self-Indulgent, Surly, Ex-Sorority Girl's Guide to Why it Often Sucks in the City, or Who are These Idiots and Why Do They All Live Next Door to Me? + 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 + Bitter is the New Black: Confessions of a Condescending, Egomaniacal, Self-Centered Smartass, Or, Why You Should Never Carry A Prada Bag to the Unemployment Office
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: NAL Trade; a edition (May 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451221257
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451221254
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.4 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (185 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #167,261 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Lancaster (Bitter Is the New Black) is a plus-sized, downwardly mobile Republican. She makes fun of disabled people. She cracks nasty about Anna Nicole Smith (granted, she was still alive at the time). She annotates her text with footnotes cheering herself on. When she's feeling particularly mean, she writes in her own "pidgin Spanish." But in spite of all her politically incorrect rantings, there are times when Lancaster is just too on-target to ignore. People who worry about Bush imposing the Christian lifestyle on everyone, for instance, should take heart from how he's raised his daughters—those "twins are but a Jell-O shot away from starring in the presidential edition of Girls Gone Wild." Even if readers can't altogether sympathize when Lancaster has to downscale her shopping "Holy Trinity" from Bloomingdale's, Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus to IKEA, Target and Trader Joe's—they know what she means when she talks about the relentlessly cheerful sales staff at Trader Joe's, the tough-love staff at Target or how IKEA's going to take over America by keeping us all busy with Allen wrenches. Her humor is a bit like junk food—something you can enjoy when no one is looking. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Jen Lancaster is the author of Bitter is the New Black. She has lived in Chicago for ten years with her husband and pets, and has yet to get the hang of the subway or returning library books in a timely manner. Visit www.jennsylvania.com

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More About the Author

Jen Lancaster is a former vice president at an investor relations firm and a New York Times bestselling author.

Customer Reviews

What a fun book to read.
Book girl
Unfortunately, as other revierws have mentioned, in the first book she had a story to tell but this one was more just random whining.
MommyTo2
I laughed out loud many times while reading it.
Julie

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

32 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Reading my way thru life on October 3, 2007
Format: Paperback
Jen takes on temp jobs while waiting for her advance check from selling her first book. To fill the extra hours, she has written a hilarious memoir about her ordinary life experiences. Cross her and you may be the lucky recipient of one of her crafty letters that you wouldn't believe someone would have the nerve to write. (And what a great tool for releasing anger) If your one of her stay at home friends, you may be on the recieving end of funny daily scoops that rival a soap opera drama, and much more interesting by far. -The thing is you never read any e-mails from them, so their lives must be dreadfully boring in comparison.

I've never had a book make me laugh out loud (even in public) like this one did! This girl has lightning quick wit and humor. Actually, reading this made me feel a little more sane. (Thanks Jen:) I thought I had an overactive mind, she's definately got me beat, and her thoughts are way funnier than mine could ever be! Her behavior and mouth are so excusable because she's just hilarious. She really does make being bad look good.

This is a keeper. When I'm feeling low and needing a good laugh, I'll be reaching for this. Reading this will make passing the time (in line or Dr's office or anywhere) much more pleasant. Just know that it is very likely to make you bust out laughing in front of everyone!
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113 of 144 people found the following review helpful By Lisa Shea HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on October 24, 2007
Format: Paperback
I really wanted to love this book, for many reasons. First, Jen survived as a female in the high stakes dot com era, which wasn't easy to do. She thrived and took charge - and traits that men would call "courageous" and "ready for action" in other men, they would call "bitchy" and "conceited" in women. It's one of the unfair aspects of men and women, and I am very eager to support women who do the best they can in those situations.

Second, Jen is overweight and is attempting to be comfortable with that in a world of stick-thin models and 24/7 press hammering us to be beautiful. Again, it is very hard in our modern society to even try to accept yourself if you're overweight, and I give great kudos to Jen for giving it her best shot.

Also, it is always REALLY scary to write your life story and put it out there. If someone criticizes Eragon, heck, it's just a fiction story. The writer might be a little upset. But if you criticize a memoir, you are now putting down an author's *way of life*. Since few of us can claim to live a perfect life, how can a reader possibly say someone else's way of life is "awful"? We are all trying to do our best with the world we live in. So I give Jen a lot of credit for having the nerve to lay her life on the table for public perusal.

Now, that all being said, I offer my impressions of the book with those caveats in mind. Jen was perhaps shaped by her dot-com environment to be snappy and judgmental. Maybe it's the only way she could survive. But you can only judge the book presented to you - you can't try to second guess the author's motives or background or reasons. And while I find her *writing style* to be great, full of snappy humor and well chosen words - I find her *willingness to harm others* to be very upsetting.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Busted on March 31, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Because of some of the reviews here on Amazon I was a little hesitant to read this book especially since I thought Bitter is the New Black was so funny but I'm glad I ignored the reviewers. BLBA is just as funny and well written as Bitter!! Jen once again puts her life out there (good, bad & ugly)for the world to read and she does a great job of capturing the classic moments of her life. I found myself cracking up in some parts and even reading certain parts to my husband where we both chuckled at Jen's life moments. Funny, fun and entertaining is to best describe this book. Way to go Jen I can't wait for the next book!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Red Pineapple on December 30, 2008
Format: Paperback
I bought this book based solely on the description you see above. As a person who is unhappy living in the suburbs and fantasizes about moving back to the city, I thought this book would give me an un-romanticized glimpse into city living. I was definitely not disappointed. Jen Lancaster puts city living into perspective, and does so hilariously. I found myself laughing out loud many times while I was reading, much to the discomfort and confusion of my boyfriend, and I think that anyone who has ever lived in an urban environment will do the same. She deals with noisy neighbors (my particular pet peeve), confusing mass transit systems, the soul-crushing search for that perfect apartment, and city vermin of all types. Even the passages that seem to deal with nothing more than her many irrational fears have the ability to make even the most neurotic person feel normal.

There were a few things about the book that bothered me, however. Lancaster is about as foul-mouthed as the most outrageous guest on Jerry Springer, and the constant swearing can get a bit tiring. She's also a conservative Republican, and her tirades against liberals can be hard for someone as left-winged as I am. But these are really issues of personal taste. Lancaster presents herself undoubtedly as she really is, and to me, that is the most admirable thing about this book. She's unapologetic and a little crazy, but that's why her life is interesting enough to be put in books.
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