Review: Oh My God, What a Complete Aisling
Authors: Emer McLysaght and Sarah Breen
Genre: Humor, Chick Lit
Related Links: First Impression Friday
“Emer McLysaght and Sarah Breen, the creators of the much-loved Aisling character and the popular Facebook page ‘Oh My God, What a Complete Aisling’, bring Aisling to life in their novel about the quintessential country girl in the big smoke.
Aisling is twenty-eight and she’s a complete … Aisling. She lives at home in Ballygobbard (or Ballygobackwards, as some gas tickets call it) with her parents and commutes to her good job at PensionsPlus in Dublin. Aisling goes out every Saturday night with her best friend Majella, who is a bit of a hames (she’s lost two phones already this year – Aisling has never lost a phone(. They love hoofing into the Coors Light if they’re ‘Out’, or the vodka and Diet Cokes if they re ‘Out Out’.
Ais spends two nights a week at her boyfriend John’s. He’s from down home and was kiss number seventeen at her twenty-first. But Aisling wants more.
She wants the ring on her finger. She wants the hen with the willy straws. She wants out of her parents’ house, although she’d miss Mammy turning on the electric blanket like clockwork and Daddy taking her car ‘out for a spin’ and bringing it back full of petrol.
When a week in Tenerife with John doesn’t end with the expected engagement, Aisling calls a halt to things and soon she has surprised herself and everyone else by agreeing to move into a three-bed in Portobello with stylish Sadhbh from HR and her friend, the mysterious Elaine.
Newly single and relocated to the big city, life is about to change utterly for this wonderful, strong, surprising and funny girl, who just happens to be a complete Aisling.”
I picked up this book in an Irish airport, it looked like good fun…and it was! I had just been attending a wedding of a friend and through meeting her close friends and family, I learned a lot about Irish wedding culture and Irish phrases. That background knowledge made this book even more entertaining!
It is a fun “finding yourself” story about a girl who has always followed everyone else’s timeline. The lesson to be learned is an important one for all people: live your own life.
Some parts of the plot dragged a little, but it was mostly while Aisling was sorting out herself and flip-flopping between helpless and self-sufficient. I always wanted her to get her stuff together and it seemed to take longer than I wanted to wait (imposing my own timeline on a fictional character).
Aisling can get a little whiny, but I found her to be entertaining and the story made me giggle from time to time. I could imagine this being incredibly fun for people that understand the Irish culture of “Aisling – the country bumpkin in the big city” and Dublin life more than I do. Having grown up in a small town in the Midwest of the US, I was sometimes annoyed by Aisling’s lack of understanding and then on the next page frustrated by the shallowness of the lifelong Dublin characters.
Check it out if you’re in the mood for a bit of modern Ireland!