Fix: A Chick Lit Wednesday Review

Fix by Leslie MargolisFix (2006) by Leslie Margolis is one of those books every girl should read. Furthermore, it should be required reading for anyone who even thinks about visiting a plastic surgeon.

Fix follows the Beekman sisters, Cameron and Allie who are the alternate protagonists of the novel. When the book begins, Cameron has already had a nose job and is enjoying a better life thanks to the surgery and a school transfer. No more mean nicknames, no more bullies, no more feeling like an outcast.

Getting ready to go to college, Cameron begins to wonder if she “needs” more cosmetic surgery in order to fit in on campus at UC “Santa Barbie.” Meanwhile, Allie is getting ready for her own nose job and has to decide if being “pretty” is worth such drastic measures. No matter where you stand on the subject, the book will probably feature something you can agree with.

Margolis really looks at the plastic surgery issue from all sides. The book is interesting but also informative. By the end of the novel, it’s clear that there is no right answer about getting (or not getting) cosmetic surgery. But Margolis intelligently examines all sides of the issue highlighting the risks and the motivations that can lead a girl to the operating table.

The writing style is clear. Margolis presents a lot of information about the risks of surgery without getting excessively gory or boring. Ally and Cameron look at the surgery issue very differently and Margolis does a good job of showing that. This fact is what elevates the book from a commentary on cosmetic surgery to a character study of how a girl can define and shape her own sense of beauty.

The Beekman sisters are great protagonists for this novel. Even if they sometimes come off a bit flat. At times the characters seem more like archetypes than real people but that might be inherent to the nature of the book–since it is so clearly trying to start a conversation about this important issue. Secondary characters, in particular, often seem to lack dimension–appearing merely to make some important point: At times it seems like the characters are preaching their respective messages/opinions rather than taking part in a plot.

Nonetheless, Fix is a quick, enjoyable and above all interesting read.

Possible Pairings: Catalyst by Laurie Halse Anderson, North of Beautiful by Justina Chen Headley, Skinny by Donna Crooner, The Fold by An Na, My Big Nose and Other Natural Disasters by Sydney Salter

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