Lala Pettibone: Standing Room Only - Heidi Mastrogiovanni

June 28, 2018

5 / 5 Stars 


I received a copy of this book from Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.

Huzzah! A feisty, hilarious female protagonist that ISN'T under 40. Go Lalal!

I'm so done in with books that focus on young people. Why aren't there more mature protagonists, eh? Well thankfully, Heidi Mastrogiovanni has stepped up to present a new alternative to the classic 'heroine' of literature; and her name is Lala Pettibone. 


Lala is a scatty, hilarious, sassy older woman and in this book, we follow her journey to France to film the movie of her book, and her emotional journey as she fights to come to terms with the loss of her first husband and the prospect of marrying again. 

Firstly, the humour - of which there was plenty in this book. Lala is a fast-talking kind of gal who doesn't take nonsense from anyone. However, this doesn't stop her from getting into all kinds of unfortunate situations. Being bulldozed to the ground by a goat, anyone? 

However, this jollity is tempered by a lot of sensitivity, and a fresh way of exploring the process of grief. Rather than zoning in on the immediate aftermath of losing a partner, the book touches on the longer-term impact; the bottled-up feelings that come pouring out, especially when embarking on a new relationship. I found all of this very moving indeed - and a heartfelt counterbalance to the humour. 

All in all, a really entertaining read - and a joy to get back into Lala's hectic, madcap life.

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