New York for Beginners by Susann Remke | Rating: ★★★☆☆ (3.8)
As a note, an e-galley of this novel was sent to me via NetGalley by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not effect my opinions in any way.
New York For Beginners was on my ultimate list of ‘wants’ when it came down to recently/to be published chick lit. There’s something about the tiny blurb that made it stand out to me instantly and it only helped spark my interest when it came down to the setting. And who can say no to that?
It just seemed to be the perfect addition to my summer reading list. As someone who loves New York City, considers it her home away from home, and frankly misses the nostalgia and warm fuzzies that came with reading books like Gossip Girl for the first time, or watching The Devil Wears Prada and Sex and the City, I feel as though I’ve been waiting for years for a new stylish, bubbly, fun novel to come my way.
At last I've found it in Susanne Remke’s debut novel which fits the type perfectly and then some. While it is not bound to be the greatest book you’ve ever read, it’s still a highly enjoyable publication. She captures the essence of life in NYC, life in fashion, and life in general perfectly. Newly re-released and translated for a batch of new American readers, New York For Beginners promises an easy to follow story for a whole new audience after already captivating German readers.
It’s a real treat for our reading list and pulls off the style so well. Although it may drag on at some parts, reading it was an absolute delight and I couldn’t help but to fall in love with it. I wouldn’t be surprised if it became the next IT novel in its genre and hope to see many great things from it. I’m predicting it now with my already lengthy list of options: New York For Beginners is going to be a total hit.
Onto the story bits, without too many spoilers:
Our leading lady Zoe has had a rough patch in her life rather recently and is looking to start a new chapter. Out with the old, in with the new! After her boyfriend of many years reconnects with his “first love”, Zoe takes on a new job in a new country to start this very new chapter of her life. Remke delivers with a light read that details on style, pop culture references and the changes of life.
From references to popular New York based programs, books and more readers will find themselves swooning in all their favorite mentions.
New York For Beginners is truly a blast and I hope this isn’t the last novel we hear from her in the U.S.A. There’s something so light and fluffy to the way she tells us a story and it’s just… I can’t describe it. It’s fun, it’s realistic and incredibly wonderful. I enjoyed myself quite a bit and grew rather fond of Zoe and hoped for the best for her as the chapters flew by.
We’re acquainted with her story and mind rather quickly and get a glimpse of her own brand of ‘revenge’ against her now-ex boyfriend – which is what made me grin stupidly and devour the novel rather quickly. Her biggest rule upon leaving home is to focus on her career and be free of men.
NO! SERIOUS! RELATIONSHIPS!
It’s a good start and a good rule for her to have set for herself from the start. Of course, rules are meant to be broken and this story is no exception.
There’s a decent amount of characters in New York for Beginners and each of them are fun to read about. You’ll meet a great deal of characters in and out of Zoe’s life; with references of celebrities sprinkled into here and there.
Out of all the characters, though, I particularly liked Zoe and her interactions with McNeighbor aka Tom.
My only complaint is how the story ended, really. That’s my only complaint about an otherwise entertaining novel. It danced about in a cliffhanger manner and made me wonder: what’s next?
Or is this it?