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A Little Change of Face (Red Dress Ink Novels) Paperback – July 1, 2005


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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Scarlett Jane Stein has always turned men's heads. With her long, black hair and perfect breasts, she draws attention wherever she goes. But an adult case of the chicken pox and the words of her envious friend Pam make Scarlett start to wonder if her looks, not her personality, are the only reason men like her. So Scarlett opts for a "makeunder," cutting off her long hair and dressing in dowdy clothing. Determined to truly reinvent herself, Scarlett quits her job at the Danbury Library, changes her name to Lettie Shaw, and gets herself hired at the smaller Bethel Library. She sets her sights on Saul, a handsome investment adviser she meets in a bar who, sure enough, just wants to be friends, that is, until Scarlett defrumps at a Halloween party. But one of the library's patrons--Steve Holt, a window painter--seems to be taking to Lettie just as she is. Baratz-Logsted offers a clever twist on makeover fiction. Kristine Huntley
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Review

". . . chick-lit with a twist!" -- Meg Cabot, author of The Princess Diaries, on Crossing the Line

"A Little Change of Face not only has something to say about how women look, and are looked at . . ." -- Christopher Moore, author of Lamb and Fluke

"Lauren Baratz-Logsted has a great voice." -- Romantic Times on Crossing the Line

"[A] terrific read -- a story that is dryly funny, brightly written and emotionally satisfying." -- Peter Lefcourt, author of Eleven Karens and The Woody, on Crossing the Line
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Product Details

  • Series: Red Dress Ink Novels
  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Red Dress Ink; First Edition edition (July 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0373895259
  • ISBN-13: 978-0373895250
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.1 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,365,570 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I was an independent bookseller and buyer for 11 years before deciding to take a chance on myself as a novelist. While trying to sell my books, I worked variously as a Publishers Weekly reviewer, a freelance editor, a sort-of librarian, and a window washer. My first novel, The Thin Pink Line, about a woman who fakes an entire pregnancy, was published by Red Dress Ink in 2003 as their own first-ever hardcover. It was published in 11 countries and was the first book from any Harlequin imprint ever to receive a starred Kirkus review. I've since had over 20 books published for adults (Vertigo), teens (The Twin's Daughter) and children (The Sisters 8 series, created with my husband and daughter). Recently, I've published a few ebooks as well, including a comedic romance for adults, The Bro-Magnet. I live in Danbury, CT, with my wonderful husband Greg and my equally wonderful daughter Jackie.

Customer Reviews

3.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Ratmammy VINE VOICE on September 22, 2005
Format: Paperback
A LITTLE CHANGE OF FACE by Lauren Baratz-Logsted

September 22, 2005

Amazon Rating: 4/5 stars

In A LITTLE CHANGE OF FACE by Lauren Baratz-Logsted, a woman decides to change her image from a beauty to a plain Jane, to see if she can attract a man not for her looks, but for what is inside.

This was my introduction to Baratz-Logsted's books, and I have to say I enjoyed this one. A LITTLE CHANGE OF FACE is not your typical chick lit novel. The premise is a bit off the wall, but I feel that the author made it work. Scarlett Jane Stein has always been known for her good looks and great body, but she's tired of being judged by her appearances. She decides it's time to make a change, so she goes from beautiful to plain Jane, even changing her job and moving to a new town to complete the process.

As Lettie Shaw, she is now a dowdy old maid, and she is no longer attracting the people she did in the past when she was a beauty. With the help of her `default' best friend Pam, Lettie is as plain as can be.

Scarlett (Lettie) finds out what it's like to live like the other half - to have to make an impression on other people without having to use her body. But she also learns a bit about friendship and people through this experiment. This was chick lit with a little bit more, and A LITTLE CHANGE OF FACE may be a book that not everyone will "get", but I felt it was a well-written book, very witty and funny, and will be reading the rest of Lauren's books in the near future.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful By erica on September 26, 2005
Format: Paperback
The premise of "A Little Change of Face" is that beautiful, confident Scarlett receives too much attention from men, so she alters her appearance to be less attractive. Her goal is to find out whether men are really interested in her, or just attracted by her looks.

The first problem with all this is that there's no antithesis. Nobody ever really believes - nobody ever even argues, and I can't think of any reason why they should - that men will *not* stop constantly hitting on Scarlett, and buying her drinks in bars and asking her out under no provocation, if she cuts her hair very short, wears ugly glasses, and dons long, baggy dresses to hide her gorgeous figure. From the beginning, the novel conflates this sort of empty and surface-oriented attention with the (generally) deeper regard signified by friendship and real romantic interest. Even Scarlett seems to have no opinon at all on the subject; she seems barely notice the attention she receives, and she has no boyfriend or close male friend at the start of the novel to give another perspective.

So Scarlett goes through a sort of reverse physical blossoming. In the process she changes her name to Lettie, sabotages her career by moving to a lower-level position in a different town, and gives up her condominium to rent a less showy home. She decides to revise not only her appearance but her entire personality, remaking herself as the self-effacing, unglamorous person she imagines a dowdy, bespectacled Lettie would be. This explicit assumption that a less beautiful woman would be less outgoing and sociable is a circular proof of the hypothesis that as an average-looking woman Scarlett will receive less notice.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By CoffeeGurl HALL OF FAME on December 28, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Thirty-nine-year-old librarian Scarlett Jane Stein (named after Scarlett O'Hara, of course) is drop-dead gorgeous. She is a petite brunette with a slim, fit bod and perfect breasts. Men line up at bars to buy her drinks. In short, Scarlett has no idea how the other side of life -- the plain or simply ugly side -- lives, and her "Default Best Friend" Pam makes sure she does. She challenges Scarlett to look as unattractive and unappealing as possible to see if men still like her. Scarlett agrees to do it; she wants to know if men want her for her personality and not just because of her breasts. So Scarlett turns into Lettie Shaw -- a plain woman who wears thick glasses, shapeless dresses and a boyish haircut. With her new persona, she meets two attractive men, Saul and Steve. One is a superficial jerk, the other one is Mr. Boy Next Door. Will Scarlett/Lettie know the difference? In her misguided Extreme-Makeover-in-reverse experiment, she discovers not only how others perceive her and women's looks in general, but how she sees herself.

I get what the author tries to do with this book. I can appreciate how different this is from cookie-cutter chick-lits out there. Most of the characters aren't very likable (especially Pam. What a petty, jealous person! And how on earth did Scarlett not see through her?), including the heroine, whom I had a hard time identifying with for most of the novel. The only thing she and I have in common is that we love books... and that we're both vertically challenged (I, too, am only five feet tall)... and we're brown-eyed brunettes... and the breasts thing rings a bell. Okay, okay, so we do have a few things in common, but the similarities end there. I appreciate her personality flaws and the fact that she cannot see what is so patently obvious.
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