I have not read a book in the past four months, ever since I had become obsessed with the last one, and wanted more and only more of that…until now. Last Friday, as I was sitting in the doctor’s office with the April edition of Vogue (I was the only one who came prepared), I stumbled across an article that mentioned the author Elaine Dundy. Her debut novel, The Dud Avocado, which was first published in 1958 and then out of publication in the United States until 2007 when it was reprinted, was discussed as being bubbly and comedic. The title itself stuck out to me. Who would think of naming their novel that? Is it quirkily referencing something that I should know? I immediately set about googling it and reading some of the reviews; one of which made a comparison of it to Sex and the City: I was sold. I had to have it. I signed onto Amazon and, to my satisfaction, there were only two or three copies left. I purchased one of the remaining copies and received it in the mail Tuesday after I got home from work.
The novel is set in 1950s Paris where, the main character Sally Jay Gorce, an American, is spending two years after graduating college. When we first are introduced to Sally Jay, she is traversing the streets of Paris wearing a ballgown in the middle of the afternoon because she had run out of clean laundry and was having “issues” getting to the cleaners. Apparently, they would close for a few hours in the middle of the day and that seems to be the only free time she has. I find the idea of anyone walking around the streets in a ballgown during the day hilarious because I would never think to do it…although, living in NYC, one could probably get away with it with the smallest amount of stares: people wear a lot of really odd outfits in Manhattan at any time of day.
I have only just started this novel, but I think that it may become one of my favorites. There is something about it that gets to you right away…maybe it just feels real, almost like you could actually live it as opposed to other novels where, for one reason or another, that is clearly not the case. It only boasts 255 pages which, for many of you may seem like a good thing because it’s not too long but, for me, it’s sad because I already know that I am going to speed through it and finish it way too quickly :(.