Book: Revenge Wears Prada
Author: Lauren Weisberger
Publisher: Harper Collins
I have a confession. When I first read The Devil Wears Prada, I didn't think the book warranted a sequel. After all, what could have made for a better ending than Andrea Sachs abusing her her evil boss and abandoning her in the middle of a street in Paris, leaving her Runway job to begin life afresh.
On hearing about Revenge Wears Prada, the idea of Miranda Priestly seeking revenge sent my mind into a frenzy. The excitement sadly, was shortlived.
Revenge Wears Prada is set a decade after Andrea Sachs soul-destroying stint with Runway, the job that 'a million girls would die for'. Today, not only does she run her own successful wedding magazine, The Plunge, she is also engaged to the much sought-after scion of one of America's biggest publishing houses.
In fact, she runs the magazine with none other than Emily Charlton, Miranda Priestly's ex-first assistant. Foes have gone on to become best friends and co-partners. All seems to be well in paradise. Well, almost.
The morning of her wedding, Andy wakes up from a nightmare where Miranda Priestly is back in her life. On what's supposed to be the best day of her life, Andy knows its an ominous sign. To make matters worse, she finds a letter from her to be mother-in-law asking her fiance not to marry her and a revelation about him having met his ex-girlfriend on his bachelor trip. Reluctantly, pushing it to the back of her mind, she gets hitched. And thus, begins the torture.
Reading about Andy's countless troubles and unhappiness (in an otherwise perfect existence which involves travelling to exotic locations for work, a caring husband and a beautiful baby daughter) reeks of ingratitude and gets irritating after a point.
Sadly, Miranda Priestly does not have a prominent presence in the book. Weisberger does a fine job of describing Andy's first encounter with Priestly on a yacht after 10 long years. Aside from that, there's nothing much except Andy's paranoia at the mere mention of Priestley's name.
The highpoint of the book, the revenge really, is Elias-Clark's interest in acquiring The Plunge, Andy and Emily's wedding magazine. While Emily is ecstatic about the idea of merging with the biggest publishing magnate, Andy is obviously dead-set against it.
The climax, thankfully an unexpected turn in events that decide the fate of The Plunge, is the only redeeming factor. The ending, as is the norm, is cheesy and happy. Like the prequel, Revenge.... is a quick and easy read and the factoring of Emily's character, with her prissy behaviour, seems to be a wise decision, invoking quite a few chuckles.
The reason the sequel fails to revive the magic is because it is just about Andrea her life and her problems which are farcical and never seem to end. Sadly, Miranda Priestly features only intermittently, appearances that don't quite manage to raise your heckles as was the case in The Devil Wears Prada. A Priestly loyalist is likely to disappointed and will miss the absence of her cold, stark, nonchalant demeanor in the sequel.