Book Review: Here I Go Again

Here I Go AgainHere I Go Again by Jen Lancaster
Publisher: NAL Hardcover
Release Date: January 29, 2013
My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

Publisher’s Description:

Twenty years after ruling the halls of her suburban Chicago high school, Lissy Ryder doesn’t understand why her glory days ended. Back then, she was worshipped…beloved…feared. Present day, not so much. She’s been pink-slipped from her high-paying job, dumped by her husband and kicked out of her condo. Now, at thirty-seven, she’s struggling to start a business out of her parents’ garage and sleeping under the hair-band posters in her old bedroom.

Lissy finally realizes karma is the only bitch bigger than she was. Her present is miserable because of her past. But it’s not like she can go back in time and change who she was…or can she?

Have you ever wondered how your life would be changed if you made different decisions in high school? Lissy Ryder is about to find out. Here I Go Again is an early 90s twist on It’s A Wonderful Life. What would the world be like if Lissy Ryder wasn’t a mean girl?

I thought this book was so much fun! Lissy is a great character – she’s so self-absorbed, I just wanted to strangle her but at the same time I thought she was really funny. I was surprised by the way her classmates present day lives changed after she went back to high school – it wasn’t what I expected at all. My only quibble with the time travel is that when Lissy came back to the present after going back to high school, she didn’t remember the past twenty years. It seems like a shame to change the path of your life but not get to remember the journey of getting to your new reality. Perhaps Deva will give her a potion that will allow her to do that. That would be a great sequel!

Fans of 80s and 90s pop culture will appreciate all the glam rock and grunge rock references. It was like a trip down memory lane for me since I’m the same age as Lissy. Because of the title, the Whitesnake song, Here I Go Again was in my head pretty much the entire time I was reading it.

Jen is primarily known for her hilarious memoirs (Bitter is the New Black, Such a Pretty Fat). This is her second novel and I think she’s really coming into her own as a fiction writer. I can’t wait to see what her next fiction offering is like. (Jen has traded her trademark footnotes for parenthetical phrases so there shouldn’t be any trouble reading Here I Go Again on an e-reader.)

Buy this book at:

Other Jen Lancaster books I’ve reviewed:
Such a Pretty Fat
Pretty In Plaid
My Fair Lazy
If You Were Here

(I received a copy of Here I Go Again courtesy of the Amazon Vine program.)

  • bermudaonion (Kathy)

    I agree with everything you wrote! I didn’t even think about the fact that she couldn’t remember the past once she’d re-written it.