Book Review: Girls in White Dresses by Jennifer Close


Girls in White Dresses, Jennifer Close, 2011

*SPOILER* Although this read is probably considered old in the world of books, seeing as it was released in 2011, I am just now getting around to reading it. Having finished it, I am glad that I read it later rather than sooner…

Close focuses on the post-college years of a group of girlfriends. (I just graduated from college this spring and can more closely identify with the awkward, yet hilarious events and problems these women encounter.) She accurately portrays the what-the-hell-am-I-going-to-do-now years that follow that long awaited college graduation. The story is filled with confusing decisions, depressing breakups, the lonely loveless nights, and the horror and jealousy of having to watch every one of your friends walk down the aisle while you’re still terrifyingly single… at 30. Close tells the story of Isabella, Mary, and Lauren; through chapters written like short stories, the author recounts the years after graduation through their twenties, ending at a significant point of change in their early thirties.

Isabella, Mary, and Lauren are the “main characters” of this charming and relatable narrative. The three all eventually end up living in New York, stuck in the midst of bad dates, grad school, horrible jobs, and miniscule apartments. The girls are all confronted with their fair share of weird guys: Lauren’s “sleazy bartenders,” Isabella’s lazy potheads, and Mary, well she doesn’t have time for dates until she passes the bar exam, after which she kisses her engaged boss. You can be happy to know that fortunately, they all will eventually meet there match after years of failed attempts. Who they end up becoming and who they end up with was an amusing discovery.

Close depicts characters that represent different paths one’s life might take after college, she also gives each character a distinct personality, making the women entirely relatable. It would be hard to read this story and not find yourself laughing because you know exactly how they’re feeling or are reminded of a similar situation that you’ve experienced. Overall, Close has delivered a fast read that can be described as entertaining, lighthearted, and witty.

Personally, it reminded me of HBO’s Girls. A very real portrayal of life for the average twenty-something: certainly not glamorous, sometimes stressful, full of “is this really happening to me right now” mistakes and lessons learned the most baffling and bewildering ways possible. This book will leave you either thinking about your own years left in the twenty-somethings era and how you can go out and make the best of them or reminiscing about your own past and how you dealt with all the craziness it brought.

Have you read this book? What did you think? Did you relate to any of the characters? If you haven’t read it, do you plan on reading it now?


2 thoughts on “Book Review: Girls in White Dresses by Jennifer Close

  1. Very nicely written review! It sounds like an enjoyable read, especially for someone who has just begun their post-graduate journey. What was that other book we talked about with the three female characters that you said I would like? Did you ever finish that one?

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