You Think It, I’ll Say It Curtis Sittenfeld Random House | 240 pages
Made up of 11 short stories, You Think It, I’ll Say It, is an enjoyable read every step of the way. Touching on themes of gender and identity, class, political bias, midlife angst, awkwardness, expectations of motherhood, society’s social media obsession and the culture of celebrity, among others, each vignette is current, relatable and sharp, and sprinkled with loads of little ironies in everyday life.
Each flawed protagonist is well- educated and “comfortable”, but seems to fear that the lives of the more professionally accomplished or rich and famous might be more satisfying than their own; a suburban mother fantasises about the demise of an old acquaintance who has become a social media star, a high-powered lawyer re-evaluates her past when running into the “queen bee” of high school, a new mum makes assumptions about the smug woman from prenatal yoga, a women’s studies professor has a one-night stand with her shuttle driver, a recent college graduate takes a baseless disliking to a woman she volunteers with, and a single mum must bring her baby on a trip to Los Angeles to interview a rising TV star, to name a few.
Perceptions are misinterpreted, questionable decisions are made, and self-criticism and resentment run rampant, making each peek into the private life of the characters, and the often cringe-worthy interactions that come with it, so interesting to read.