English as a Second Language-Megan Crane

Anglophile? Check.   Suffered through grad school? Check.   Love the idea of reading books for a year (as a job)?  Check.  Harbor an inner snark just dying to be let out?  Check.

Then get out the discrete book cover and grab this book for a quick weekend read.  Megan Crane spent her grad school years in the UK, then moved to Cali and wrote this first novel about a mid-20s (well, that’s charitable–late 20s) woman looking for meaning who ends up in grad school near Manchester because her ex told her she couldn’t.

She’s hard-edged, sharp-tongued, drinks like a fish and smokes like a chimney.

And everyone, except Suzanne, loves her.

She says stupid things in her seminars, but ends up with a distinction on her first big paper and acceptance into the doctoral program.

This book is very lite in intellectual calories, but it’s all kinds of fun to fantasize about a year in England with two blokes as your best mates in the pub and two smart women to be your besties as housemates, the ability to drink and smoke and still look great, the chance to do nothing but go to school without having to hold down a job or, seemingly, work that hard at staying in school.

Here’s the reality part:  Megan Crane earned a PhD in literature from an undisclosed British university and went on to write five chicklit novels, but, my own face is red here, she also writes Harlequin romances as Caitlyn Crews and she seems to be churning out one a year.  I don’t know whether to be embarrassed for her or cheer for her.  I guess, like Suzanne, I hate her and want to be her all at once.

Finished 4/22/12




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