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Word Count: 859
Vile bodies Dont You Want Me India Knight 272pp Penguin In this follow-up to her hugely successful My Life On a Plate India Knight explores new shallows Her heroine 38-year-old Stella shares her Primrose Hill house with her 18-month-old daughter Honey and her handsome but red-haired lodger Frank Stella does the odd translating job but is more fully occupied with sleeping off her hangovers applying make-up taking it off again and - mostly - worrying about where the next shag is coming from Stella hasnt had sex since the departure a year ago of Honeys art-dealer father Dominic Actually Dominic left when Honey was eight months old which makes her 20 months not 18 and later Stella says he left a couple of years ago This is one of several irritating lazinesses like referring to Gordon the non-tank engine as green when as any fule kno hes blue Yes Stellas up for it and by page 59 shes found it A plastic surgeon with dyed chest hair sits next to her at a dinner party and performs cunnilingus on a fig As they do Inexplicably Stella goes home with him He makes tiger noises plays doctors and nurses dances to Barry White with his hand down her knickers But Stella isnt truly horrified until she discovers that the fig-feller is - pass the sick-bag - over 60 How dare he Nooooo I wail Nooooo Nooooo Its too much for Rupert one of her exes who makes a bogus application to Meals on Wheels on her behalf This is where the book becomes worse than just silly If youre old fat ugly badly dressed or interested in anything other than bum jokes and fleshly gratification youre mocked The nuisance call to Meals on Wheels is presented uncritically Were simply meant to think its funny Spastic is a term of abuse Stella is asked if shes been to India I really loved the shops she says and
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