Review: My Fair Lazy by Jen Lancaster

Title: My Fair Lazy

Author: Jen Lancaster

Genre/Pages: Humor Memoir/384

Publication: NAL Hardcover; May 4, 2010

Rating: 3 Bookmarks

Source: Review copy courtesy of NAL

In her latest installment, Jen Lancaster is on a journey of self-improvement–a JENaissance–but her sharp wit is a bit dull on this particular trip.

Jen Lancaster’s crusade to become more urbane and culturally enlightened tackles a few areas–performing arts, cuisine–and is an entertaining read, but it fell far short of my expectations.  Could it be that my expectations were too high, or was it just that some anecdotes felt a bit forced, shoe-horned into the book even though they didn’t relate to the theme?

Neophobe that I am, I was particularly interested in her forays into the underbelly of exotic cuisine.  Her experiences with Turkish and  Cuban food and molecular gastronomy (Moto, Chicago) were enough to send me reeling.  I actually traveled to Istanbul when I was 19 and subsisted on white rice and illicit trips to the McDonald’s in Taksim Square.  I can’t promise that I’d behave any differently if I woke up in Turkey tomorrow, so it was inspiring to see Lancaster taking one for the team, embracing the new foods.  I lived vicariously through her, if nothing else.

My Fair Lazy is Lancaster’s 5th memoir and I’m not sure how many more books she can churn out without some fresh experiences.  If I’d have to wager, I’d put my money on a lengthy trip abroad for Jen and her husband Fletch to give her material for her next book.

My Fair Lazy is a good read–fun for the beach or pool–but it didn’t have me laughing nearly as hard as a few of her other memoirs.


  1. Oh boy! You got me into Lancaster and I have three of her other books still to read — including Such A Pretty Fat, which I really want to start soon! — so I’ll probably push this one to the back of my wishlist for now. Love that adorable cover, though! And a trip abroad sounds like a great idea… for anyone, hehe!

  2. I haven’t ready any of her books yet, but I do have Bitter is the New Black sitting on my shelf. I just need to get to it.
    .-= dw´s last blog ..New Release: Play Dead =-.

  3. First of all I can’t really resist those animal print slippers! Secondly I haven’t read any of her work but just read about another of her books yesterday. I’ve got to check her out!
    .-= Kathleen´s last blog ..Booking Through Thursday: How do you Decide What to Read =-.

  4. I really want to try some of Lancaster’s work, but don’t think I’ll start with this one after your review.

  5. I do enjoy Jen Lancaster but I am wondering just how many of these she can turn out … it seems like one a year. There is just so much you can write about … you have to live at some point. Sounds like she needs to take a break for a little bit.
    .-= Jenners´s last blog ..Review: "Everything Is Illuminated" by Jonathan Safran Foer =-.

  6. I love her books but this is the second review I have seen which has said that this one is not as good as her others. Her humor is great so I will probably pick this one up anyway!
    .-= Colleen (Books in the City)´s last blog ..Giveaway:Season of Second Chances ARC =-.

  7. She should come to Korea for the next one. Live here for a year. Bizarro world.

    I’ve never read any of her memoirs, but now I want to!
    .-= bybee´s last blog ..Not My Cup Of Whatever They Drink In Sweden =-.

  8. Oh see, now I thought this one was better than her last two. For me, Bitter was her best, and each one was progressively less funny. With My Fair Lazy I was laughing and snickering out loud again; I rank it up there with Bright Lights, Big Ass. The only thing I didn’t care for was her sporadic use of big words that came off as using big words just for the sake of using big words.

  9. You know, I was wondering when I saw that she had another memoir out how she could possibly have something else to say. Her others where so funny that I’ll probably read it but this is good to know!
    .-= Amused´s last blog ..Mailbox Monday – May 10 – 15, 2010 =-.

  10. Aww… wish this one was as funny as her books are touted out to be. I’m yet to read a Jen Lancaster, but I’m waiting for a hold to come through.

  11. I have to agree – although I LOVED her other books – My Fair Lazy is a good read, but not quite as funny as the others. But then, who’s to say she always has to be funny?

    But, I miss the snorting laughs I got off of the first few. I do think she needs to explore some new material. I know she has the right stuff, it’s just that My Fair Lazy seemed…well, a lazy effort at best.

    For those that haven’t read her at all yet – go ahead and read My Fair Lazy first, and I think you’ll enjoy it. Then read the other ones.

  12. Stephanie says:

    I’m way late to this review but I have to agree with you 100%. I love her previous books, in fact, I’ve breezed through them. My Fair Lazy just didn’t have me laughing out or leave me wanting more. I didn’t even finish it. Such a Pretty Fat by far is my favorite. Are you excited about her fiction book, If You Were Here, coming in May?

  13. i just tweeted about If You Were Here yesterday and hope to get my paws on a copy sooner rather than later! Can’t imagine what it will be like–Lancaster and fiction? Hope it’s awesome!

  14. Stephanie says:

    She is such a funny lady. Her Assange posts have been hilarious this week.

    I just started following you today, so unfortunately I didn’t see that tweet. Hey, can I email you later? I’m ABookishMind on Twitter. I have some questions for you if you don’t mind.

  15. Stephanie says:

    OK, I just looked back through my tweets and realized I quoted you. LOL There is more coffee in my forecast today.

  16. Fire away with questions…and I’m already following you on twitter. 🙂

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