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The Seven Year Bitch Hardcover – May 13, 2010


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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Welcome to not-so-happily-ever-after. Soon-to-be-40 Izzy just lost her Wall Street job, has a husband who runs a struggling publishing operation from their apartment, a year-old son, and a growing suspicion she's living life in captivity. It's not that you get a seven-year itch, divorced pal Joy confides. It's that they turn you into a seven-year bitch. And so Izzy goes all in, railing at hubby Russell; becoming involved in her son's nanny's quest to get pregnant; lusting after the rich, handsome guy who got away; and discovering her own heart thanks to her uncommon new job: judging promotional contest essays for 25 cents each. Belle's (Little Stalker) smart and hilariously ridiculous paean to love, marriage, and a baby carriage proves you can't always get what you want and you rarely get what you need, but you always get to choose. There are plenty of laugh-out-loud moments that come uncomfortably close to the truth about less-than-perfect relationships, which helps salvage an ending wrapped just a little too tight. Still, style and wit count, and on that, Belle doesn't disappoint. (May)
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From Booklist

Isolde “Izzy” Brilliant was living her dream. She was a wife, mother, and high-powered financial analyst living in downtown Manhattan. When she finds herself downsized out of a job, Izzy has way too much time on her hands and begins to analyze her life. Her marriage is on the rocks: should she get a divorce? Is she a bad mother if she gets another job? Is she selfish to get a nanny if she doesn’t even have a job? Should she have an affair with an old acquaintance and go away with him to India? Over the course of three years, we watch Izzy nitpick her husband, dissect her marriage, and compare her life to everyone else’s around her. She’s neurotic, occasionally offensive, and completely oblivious to the incredible life that she’s built. There are genuine laugh-out-loud moments, but they are too few and far between in this string of vignettes about one woman’s ups and downs in her marriage and her struggle with motherhood. --Carolyn Kubisz
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Riverhead Hardcover (May 13, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1594487553
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594487552
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.2 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,808,852 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

3.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Michelle A. on May 13, 2010
Format: Hardcover
One word; Hilarious! I loved this book! She is a pro! There are a lot of lol pages in this book.... Mothers will especially enjoy this book... You'll go like 'Oh I've been there, yelled at that, showed that, smelled that,...' I love the way she writes. You can not put the book down not only because it is really good but because you can not stop reading her wonderful writing. She could write a novel about clouds and you would still read it with a smile on your face to the end at one sitting.
This book is about Izzy coming to a point in her life that everything seems like falling apart. She lost her job, she had a baby at the age of 39 and her best friend is getting divorced and telling her that husbands are turning wives in to bitches. It is not the '7 Year Itch' you get she says it is becoming a 7 year bitch. From that point and on she starts questioning her life. Is she happy with her husband who can seem never to make one thing right? She absolutely adores her newborn. He is the new man in her life. When she feels bored with her life an old flame starts to sparkle. Should she follow him or just stay where she is and try to be happy with what she has? All the questions she has are answered at the end. You won't be disappointed!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Cynthia Anderson on June 26, 2012
Format: Paperback
For fan's of Belle's work whom are drawn to the dark, and heavily flawed characters of which she is a master at creating, The Seven Year Bitch delivers on all accounts. That being said if you are looking for a syrupy sweet 'beach book', that is comprised of one-dimensional characters who are consistently in line with what society considers 'normal' this is probably not the title for you. Much like the protagonists in Belle's other works, such as in Going Down which I found to be the most simliar to The Seven Year Bitch, Isolde has issues with her life, her marriage even at times motherhood. For me this issues made Isolde an engaging, hilarious and sometimes cringe-inducing character who was both fascinating and highly relatable.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Karen E. Levine on July 13, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Jennifer Belle is so out of the box creative and a brilliant writer. To rehash what the plot is about is superfluous. The point is that Jennifer could write about installing a roll of toilet paper and it would be hilarious. It saddens me that she is so often categorized under chic-lit for her writing is so smart and clever bordering on snarky with such wit, charm and joivre de vivre that it embarrases me "for her" to be in those chick-litterers company. To be as clever and literate as she is, one has to be so bright and a fabulous writer. The reader has to pay really careful attention to her one liners and carefully crafted prose. If so, it is such a joyful and entertaining read. I passed it along to 3 people already.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Melyse La on September 7, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I love Jennifer Belle and read her books over and over. This has been my favorite so far. I appreciate that she is writing from the perspective of a new mother instead of a single girl like her other books. Belle is incredibly witty and insightful and incorporates so many little things throughout the book together. Some of the other reviews said that the book was pointless and the stories didn't relate to anything else in the book, but they all do. Every little thing that happens is important in some way in her quest throughout the book and her relationship with her husband. I relate to Jennifer Belle's characters more than I have to any other characters in other books. She is so real and raw and honest. Overall, fabulous book! I couldn't put it down.
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Format: Hardcover
The Seven Year Bitch is, to me, an extremely depressing and unneeded look into the life of the semi-privileged. The book opens with our protagonist Isolde loosing her job...and hating her husband and things never really get better from there. Isolde is a screaming shrew and her husband Russell is a weak, no back-boned wimp. While I understand that this book takes into consideration the relative brevity of their marriage and the fact that Isolde seems to have a case of postpartum depression, they do nearly nothing to save their marriage. They are content to scream, cry and contemplate affairs and little else. Frankly most of what happens in this book I never found funny at all. This was a painful and bleak look into someones horrible marriage and I wish I had never peeked. The writing was stilted, there was no humor (at least from my point of view), and if this is what women are really like today, then I'm glad I'm not young, but see, the fact is the author can't even use youth as an excuse for the protagonists horrid behavior. They too are middle aged!.

Most ..heck all of the characters where unsympathetic, crass, nosy, self centered and obsessed with the lives of others instead of the ones they supposedly love.

Save a tree and bypass this bleak look at a marriage that should have never have taken place.
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By J. Scully on June 20, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Feeling trapped in an unhappy marriage, Isolde Brilliant's world is turned upside down when she's laid off from her job as a successful hedge fund manager. With a good severance package and a new baby at home she decides to take some time off to be a stay-at-home mother, but finds if difficult to let go of who she was. As Izzy struggles with her marriage and finds new ways to fill her time, she finally learns to love her life for what it is.

The Seven Year Bitch is a funny and true-to-life story of motherhood and marriage. Jennifer Belle creates layered characters, who are flawed yet full of heart and completely human. Unfortunately, The Seven Year Bitch falls short when it comes to plot. In the end everything comes together, but the story would have been much more effective if it had been shorter. The middle section of the book drags and I found myself skimming through chapters that bore no relevance to the outcome of the book. But the writing is smart, funny and always believable, which helps balance out the slow pace of the story.
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