Lipstick and Lies

Lipstick and Lies – Debbie Viggiano

Viggiano LipstickI’m not going to put a plot synopsis in as I don’t like spoilers. Suffice to say that Lipstick and Lies is a sequel to Stockings and Cellulite, and it’s just as mad and hilarious as its predecessor. In fact, I downloaded this one immediately I had finished the first, I enjoyed it so much.

Cassandra’s  a good mum, though her cooking is not so good, she is permanently exhausted, and life is noisy, chaotic, and utterly recognisable. Cass is convinced an ex-girlfriend is out to split up Cass and her husband. He thinks she’s misreading the situation because she’s tired and has issues with the woman anyway. He’s stressed because it all connected to his job. In the middle of this, the ex-husband goes missing. We end up on a veritable high-speed, joyride trying to prove Cass is right. As always aided and abetted by her equally daft but adorable friends.

I love its portrayal of life with babies, the screaming, puking, pooing, and general inability to sleep when you need them to or stay awake when you don’t. There are no yummy mummies in this book; kidnapping and murder are the order of the day, with side dishes of hormonal kids, insane sex lives, ‘silver’ romance, and general mayhem.  If you liked the first, you’ll like this too.

Again, it would have been great to have had more of the relationship between Cass and her husband. I feel that I knew more about Morag and Matt than them.

As before, this is a light, hilarious book, and so much fun to read. I definitely recommend giving it a go. I like being made to laugh out loud, (it happens so rarely when I’m reading), so I’m also going to have a read of some of Debbie’s other books.

Stockings and Cellulite

Stockings and Cellulite – Debbie Viggiano

Viggiano StockingsCassandra Cherry’s life takes a turn for the worse when she catches husband Stevie in bed with a 45-year-old divorcee called Cynthia. Suddenly single, Cass throws herself into the business of getting over Stevie with gusto. Then, when Cass is least prepared, and much to Stevie’s chagrin, she falls in love with the last person she’d expect.

I was in two minds about this book, and read a sample. Then immediately to get the whole book. Debbie Viggiano had me laughing from the very start. When you consider the awful events that kickstart the book, this is surprising. What I love is the honesty. Women temporarily escaping the confines of domesticity, breaking loose, and getting absolutely paralytic. Insisting they are strong, independent women yet desperate for a man and marriage.

C’mon. Who hasn’t been there? Friends and I used to joke that it would be far less exhausting, and a damn sight cheaper, if we could just go to a jewellers buy the rings and get the man free.

There is a part of me that totally identifies with Cassandra. Many of the circumstances she finds herself in had me giggling and reminiscing, as they reflected so many daft and embarrassing situations I have found myself in.  (Leaving home without my purse and hubbie having to drive two hours up the motorway at 11 o’clock at night, as I was almost out of petrol  and sitting in a service area with no money). So, those who have said these situations are far-fetched are people who have never experienced them. Her scenes regarding finding dates and meeting them, had me in equal parts cringing and laughing.

As for her characters, spend any Saturday night watching a group of female friends out on the town, and you will find these women. Debbie may write them in a slight ‘caricature’ style, but I think that makes it all the better. They’re funny, bubbly, and outrageous, as well as vulnerable, desperate, and emotional.

I would have liked more of the accidental meetings between Cass and the hero of this tale, and a little less of the women. I don’t think that was given enough depth. I’m not sure about the title, and not finding the whole surname thing funny, BUT I do recommend this if you want something light,  enjoyable, and hilarious. I loved it enough to get the sequel, Lipstick and Lies.