Beach Reads

Chick Lit Meets the Recession

Chick-lit heroines have fallen on hard times. The New York Times reports that the designer-strewn world of the chick-lit novel has vanished, as the publishing industry starts to catch up with the meltdown. In Wendy Walker's forthcoming Social Lives, a Connecticut matron deals with dwindling resources as her husband is investigated for embezzlement. The Penny Pinchers Club, by Sarah Strohmeyer features a heroine who ends her spendthrift ways and starts salvaging food from the supermarket trash bin, as she suspects her husband of 20 years is about to leave her. The thrifty heroines of these stories are perfectly chick-lit because the genre isn't based solely on a fascination with the bad behavior of the wealthy. According to one of the editors of Chick Lit: The New Woman's Fiction, the genre "responds through comedy to real situations confronting real women." At the moment, there's nothing more real than the recession.