17 June 2007
0 trash book: the triology
one of the greatest advantages of being a girl is the ability to read chick lit (or "feminine literature" as lindear and i prefer to call it) with only moderate social derision. because chick lit is kind of awesome. it's so greek tragedy. and i'm quite sure were euripides and aristophanes and all the boys alive today, this is what they would be scribbling away on- chick lit.
you may remember trash book. well, i've recently discovered it's long lost triplets. THE SPOILS OF TIME TRILOGY. a title so stupidly pretentious that it demands capitalization. i was initially drawn in by the deceptively classy covers. just slap a norman parkinson photo on the trashiest of trash and i'm so there. but then, there's something more.
these are atrocious books. ridiculously far-fetched, poorly written and riddled with more typos than i've ever seen in my life. and yet... i cannot put them down. because, at the conclusion of volume two, this is where we are:
barty, the poor child taken in by wealthy publishing maven celia lytton (whose life was inadvertently saved when barty fell ill and forced her to miss the sailing of the titanic and who has now become heavily involved in the "britons for hitler!" campaign), who is married to oliver (whom she tricked into marriage by getting pregnant and against whom she had an affair with the children's book writer sebastian brooke, which resulted in her getting pregnant and the birth of kit and whose wife pandora died giving birth to their child isabella, whom sebastian refused to acknowledge for seven years) in volume 1, fell madly head over heels in love and lost her virginity to laurence elliot (who was incredibly sexy but also the sworn enemy of the new york lyttons- maud and robert- because robert married laurence's mom and laurence's mom died giving birth to another baby and laurence has hated them ever since and then because he made a fortune in the stock market crash, maud hated him in return with the fire of a thousand suns), with whom barty is staying because she fled england after giles lytton (celia's son who is madly in love with barty and yet married to a bossy boots woman named helana, whom he doesn't love and with whom he has very unsatisfactory sex that has, nonetheless, produced two children) professed his undying love for her and after she discovered the unfortunately named husband of venetia lytton (one of celia's beautifully vapid twin daughters who always picked on barty as the poor child but have now wandered into unhappy marriages of their own by having sex and getting pregnant and making the boys marry them), boy warwick, was having an affair with her beloved friend abbie, whom celia then engaged to give venetia's four children piano lessons because their aunt adele was unavailable because she had gone to paris to have an affair with a married, jewish man. turns out, adele's married, jewish man returned to his wife, who thought she was pregnant, so adele fled france with her illegitimate children on the eve of war and returned to england only to discover that her married, jewish man had died in the holocaust, for which she holds her mother, celia, personally responsible. wicked laurence elliott, who married a woman he didn't love to spite barty, returns to england to seduce barty, who is working in the military and has become engaged to a boring soldier, who makes her miss laurence's wickedness all the more and conveniently dies. laurence and barty have three pages of sex and laurence promptly dies and barty is promptly pregnant. sebastian and celia's son, kit- who believes he is celia and oliver's son- is blinded in the war and falls madly in love with sebastian and pandora's daughter, isabella. after many an incestuous make out scene, the pair are thwarted in their attempt to elope and the ugly truth is revealed.
how can you not love that? how can that fail to be anything less than riveting? 1,400 pages bringing us three central truths: (1) sex usually results in babies, (2) sex with married men always results in babies, and (3) blind men should not make out with the children of close family friends.