Saturday, 2 February 2008

The Glamliterrati: Bitter Chocolate by Lesley Lokko

Jet setting across the world with a killer body stylishly clad in designer togs and manicured feet ensconsed in shoes with a flash of red sole, taming a millionaire playboy,and going on a journey of self discovery along the rags to riches or riches to rags and back round to riches route but second time round with a sisters are doing it for themselves soundtrack are all the hallmarks of glam lit. It's most eminent authors are Sophie Kinsella, Louise Bagshawe, Tilly Bagshawe, Tasmina Perry and of course Lesley Lokko. But what sets Lokko apart is her ability to inject the genre with a refreshing dose of intellect. She has the canny ability to weave a gripping narrative amidst a backdrop of social and polical change but this does not detract from the sheer unputdownable nature of her books. In a way they're not unlike flavoured cough sweets. They're a fun romp and a gripping read but underneath the frou frou you're also taking away some pearls of wisdom and a greater awareness of the subtleties of social class and power structures without realising it. Her first novel 'Sundowners' was a canter from rural England, to sunny South Africa with a couple of detours along the way and told the story of wealthy heiress Rianne de Zoete

Her latest is called 'Bitter Chocolate'I picked it up today and cannot wait to devour it. Here's the blurb:

'Laure, seventeen, beautiful and already abandoned twice in her young life. Once by the glamorous mother she can barely remember, a woman who brought shame on the St Lazare family name and fled to America; and then again by a handsome soldier who left her pregnant and alone, facing the wrath of her grandmother. Amelie, caught in a world where she's neither servant or mistress, trapped between the St Lazare family she's always worked for and the simmering hostility of a country on the verge of meltdown. With a past she knows nothing about and no family of her own, she yearns to find a place that can be home. Melanie, the rock star's daughter who has everything money can buy except the love she craves. A daddy's girl caught in a whirl of damaging relationships, testing those closest to her. In one man, she sees the chance to change her life for ever, but at what price? Three girls in search of a missing piece of their lives; three girls who will change their worlds to find it.In a story that begins in the relentless heat of a Haitian summer and sweeps through the luxury of America's elite to the colourful chaos of East End London, BITTER CHOCOLATE is a glorious tale of the quest for love, marriage and finding a place to belong.'

Sound fantastic doesn't it!

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