Getting Over Jack Wagner

Getting Over Jack Wagner

Book - 2003
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Where are all the real rock stars?
Eliza is looking to date a rock star -- though she uses the term loosely. None of her boyfriends have been famous. Most have unbearable habits and overbearing mothers. A few only played show tunes. Still, they're intense. Pierced. Tragically stubbled. With a predilection for dressing in black. Eliza finds them deep -- in theory, anyway. But in reality, none comes close to the object of her original rock-star crush: actor/crooner Jack Wagner. When her latest catch turns out be another mama's boy, Eliza begins to realize love is nothing like her favorite '80s song.

Is she ready to face the music?
Just as Eliza is planning her next move, she's dealt an emotional triple-whammy involving her sister, her best friend, and a horrific blind date. That's when she realizes that only by taking a good look at her past -- and her tape collection -- will she ever be able to hear a different kind of song and live a different kind of life.
Publisher: New York : Downtown Press, c2003
ISBN: 9780743464673
0743464672
Characteristics: v, 286 p. ; 21 cm

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FindingJane Jan 02, 2016

Almost agonizingly honest, “Getting over Jack Wagner” reads like an intimate diary of a woman’s foray from childhood through adolescence to adulthood. The silly crushes, the passionate misplaced love affairs, the embarrassing hairstyles, clothing, musical genres, etc.—they’re all here. It’s not juvenile (all right, maybe it is) but it’s juvenilia all women of a certain age can relate to and that makes it funny, moving, intimate and oh so delicious to read.

This is unabashed chick lit, with the male characters mainly relegated to be either earnest poseurs or stiff banker types. Most men readers may find Eliza’s romantic flailings to be either endearing or boring. But she’s a skilled writer. The dialogue is realistic, amusing, sharp and pointed and the book doesn’t end with a stereotypical finish. While women will find it more appealing than men, guys might enjoy a gander, too (especially if any of them ever entertained ideas about starting a rock band in their youth).

Ms. Juska’s semi-autobiographical novel has all the details of confidences between two besties holding sleepovers and whispering under the covers when they’re supposed to be asleep. At the end of the novel, you feel as if Elise could be your BFF or make you want to call up yours and talk about that summer when you had that weird crush on that rock star with the wild hair, piercings or tattoos. For anyone who wants to relive what it meant to grow up in the 60s to the early 90s (when cell phones were still something of a novelty), “Getting over Jack Wagner” may be either a hilarious journey or a shuddering reminder of that time we shared a crusty blanket with that Jon Bon Jovi-wannabe.

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