Georgia Clark’s The Regulars

What if you had the chance to correct all of your flaws, would you take it? In Georgia Clark’s debut novel, The Regulars, she explores the idea of becoming perfect (beautiful) as three friends struggle with being in their early twenties and deciding what they want to do with their lives. But there’s a catch. In order to be ‘pretty,’ they could end up sacrificing the most important thing of all. What would you sacrifice to be ‘pretty’?

Evie, Krista and Willow are trying to make sense of life in New York City. Trying to find the perfect jobs, the perfect relationships, and just have enough money to pay their monthly bills. Evie is a copywriter working for a magazine that caters towards materialism, beauty and sex as power. She wants to empower women and educate them that look aren’t everything. Krista dropped out of law school to try to make it as an actress but has not been successful. Willow is the daughter of a movie mogul who is tired of living life in her father’s shadow. She has a hard time getting close to anyone, including Evie and Krista, and will unexpectedly disappear from time to time. After losing her agent, Krista is sitting at a bar mid-day when she runs into an old acquaintance who, sensing Krista’s mood gives her Pretty. Pretty is a magic potion that makes anyone who takes it gorgeous. After much debate, all three girls end of taking the potion. They all become beautiful, confident women, unrecognizable as their own selves. But are they?

As I was reading, I found myself thinking about what I would be willing to give up to become perfect. If I would be curious enough to take the potion (probably?!), and if so, if I too would become addicted to it like the characters here were. What I found to be really interesting was that, Evie, Krista and Willow all realized that they were lacking the same thing: confidence. It was the potion that enabled them to gain confidence in themselves and try the things that they were most scared of, and it was the confidence that they eventually retained once the effects of the potion finally started wearing off. As a shy person, I identified with the lack of confidence that the characters had. I still sometimes have trouble mustering the courage to speak up for myself, but I’ve found that that’s the only way to actually change a situation. And it’s definitely the only way to get what you want. I found myself laughing at some parts and cringing at others, thinking what the hell were they doing. All in all, I feel that it’s a great lesson to anyone, that if you just dig deep inside yourself, you can allow yourself the confidence to do anything.

 

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The Regulars by Georgia Clark. Emily Bestler Books. Aug 2016.

Pieces of Ourselves

I was talking with Melissa this morning and she told me about a dream that she had last night, a vision, of a specific moment with an old love, one who she has never been able to fully forget. Her description was so vivid that I could imagine myself being there, so vivid that, in the moment, she felt as though she was there again. When she opened her eyes, she felt an intense ache in her heart, a longing that she hadn’t felt in a while. I told her that I knew exactly what she was talking about and how she felt because the same thing happened to me a few days earlier. She asked me, “How does it feel so real?? How come we can’t remember happy moments like that…”

I thought about her question for a moment, then answered with this: It feels so real because it was, because we still love/miss that person so much. Because the memories that bring us to tears have a more profound effect on us than ones that make us smile.

As much as we live for those moments of happiness, they don’t affect us nearly as much as the devastating ones when remembered. Happiness is what we strive for; it’s the ideal, yet, it is pain, we are told, that gives us strength and makes us grow. But really, why is this? Could it just be that we can remember loss more than love because that is what we’ve grown up hearing? Couldn’t we grow just as much through love as through loss? Honestly, I think it is more a matter of changing your perspective, because of course we can and we do. But those memories that Melissa had, that I’ve had, that we all have had, they will always haunt us not only because of the people that we were with then, but even more so because of the person that we were at that moment…a piece of ourselves that we can never get back.