Ok so basically Mona, main character of Pretend I’m Dead, is me. If Mona were from England or France that is. Well she’s a lot me, some parts are someone else. But all that to basically say that I GET Mona. She’s someone I would have been BFF with back in my 20’s.
Pretend I’m Dead by Jen Beagin is a quirky, funny, and kind of sad at times novel, about Mona, a 24 year old who cleans houses for a living. Mona’s parents kind of abandoned her with an aunt in her teens, and she has some serious childhood issues she needs to process. Mona also has a tendency to fall for the wrong type of guy and get her heart broken. After her junkie boyfriend disappears and breaks her heart she leaves her life in Massachusetts behind and moves into a casita in New Mexico, as a way to make a new beginning for herself. Along the way she meets some equally quirky bit endearing characters such as the two Yokos and Betty.
Mona is weird, and funny, and super smart: you can’t help but like her and even get her and why she does what she does. I cleaned houses and hotel rooms off and on for years and always got the looks Mona did... But even today I would rather do that than work for a corporation.
Jen Beagin does a great job with all of the characters in the book, they are all very likeable despite being totally weird. I really recommend this book, Jen Beagin’s prose is brilliant and her knack for developing a great plot is great.
Pretend I’m Dead will be published by Scribner on May 15th. Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the advance copy!