Tuesday, 5 August 2014
Review: Virgin by Radhika Sanghani
Publisher: Berkley Trade
Format: Paperback / eBook
Released: August 5th, 2014
Okay, I admit it…I didn’t do it. Yet. This is normal, right? I mean, just because everyone I know has talked like they’ve already done it doesn’t mean that they’re telling the truth…right? It’s not like I’m asking for that much. I don’t need the perfect guy. I don’t need candlelight or roses. Honestly, I don’t even need a real bed. The guys I know complain that girls are always looking for Mr. Right—do I have to wear a sign that says I’m only looking for Mr. Right Now? Sooooo…anyone out there want sex? Anyone? Hello? Just for fun? I am not going to die a virgin. One way or another I am going to make this happen. Hey, what have I got to lose? Besides the obvious.
Virgin is one of those books that I'll be telling all my friends to read. It's hilariously funny, brutally honest and tackles one of the most taboo subjects of them all: sex and virginity. Due to its subject matter it's intended for older readers, and is perfect for anyone who reads New Adult and adult fiction. I have to mention that there's a lot of explicit content, but it's all completely valid to the story and very, very funny. Wow, did I laugh my head off!
Ellie is twenty-one and still a virgin. She lives in London, is in her final year of university and has very little in the way of experience. After a trip to her doctor's office, she decides to change her sexual status and become a woman of the world before leaving education and heading out into the big wide job market. Obviously meeting the right guy and losing her virginity is much easier said than done, and what follows is Ellie's honest, earnest look at young women and their sex lives.
There are so many topics covered in Virgin that I can't possibly mention them all, and some I just plain can't talk about here because they're far too explicit. But FUNNY. Did I mention that already?! Every anxiety girls have about boys, appearance and sex is featured in this novel, mostly from Ellie and her friend Emma's perspectives. Nothing is too taboo to talk about, no topic is shied away from and, to be perfectly honest, it's so refreshing. Ellie has so many questions that I'm sure lots of real life girls have had at one point in their lives, and it's great that they're getting answered in a fiction novel. Author Radhika Sanghani leaves no stone unturned (believe me, NO stone is left unturned - you'll see what I mean when you read it), and I think she's brilliant for giving a voice to twenty-something girls everywhere.
I ended up really liking Ellie, right from the beginning too. Her naivete is quite charming, as is her quest to uncover the reason why women feel compelled to do certain things or look a certain way. She's a strong, independent woman with a mind of her own and she does what she wants when she wants to. She's also intelligent and sensible when it comes to all matters of sex, never intentionally putting herself at risk and throwing caution out the window. She learns a lot of lessons along the way, some good and some bad, and garners a huge amount of life experience because of it. She sees that people aren't always who you think they are, everyone has secrets and that true friendship really is more important than a possible boyfriend.
Virgin is now on my list of most enjoyable books I've read this year, and it's certainly up there as one of the most amusing. I've actually likened it to Joanna Bolouri's The List in terms of humour and content, though of course both stories are very different. If you've read and enjoyed The List then I think you'll absolutely love Virgin. It's one of those books I want to read again, probably when I'm in a bad mood and need cheering up, and I hope it resonates with readers far and wide. I love it!
* Please note: this is an adult book with sexual content and is aimed at older readers.