Mushy Peas on Toast

23 01 2009

The cover to the book Mushy Peas on Toast

The cover to the book Mushy Peas on Toast

Author: Laurian Clemence

Pages: 271

Published: 2008

ISBN: 9781770100671

“Crisis.

Not many books start at the end.  This one does.”

Peas is an archetypal Jo’burg twenty-something girl, with a mundane job as a food journalist.  This young charismatic drama queen works hard and plays even harder, leaving nothing but chaos behind her.  After a nasty break up with Anthony, her boyfriend of 6 years and “possible fatherly candidate to her two perfect children”, Peas begins to re-evaluate her life.

This charming tale of a young woman in contemporary Johannesburg, living the night life in high heels and trying to discover what love has in store for her. After the aforementioned breakup, Peas is back in the game: going on dates with an Austrian and some other hopeful, but when Lizzy, Peas’ friend from boarding school, drags her out the house and she meets, and hits off with, the infamous “Randy”.  Peas and Randy don’t have an easy time: she is neurotic of farting in front of him and he is grumpy because of mosquitoes.  Laurian Clemence lays it all on the table, from exhaustive sex to waxing feet.  Peas battles with friends, commitment and her boss, THE SUB.  What more could a girl want when she has Randy?

Life seems good until Randy breaks up with her, a broken Peas turns to her vast array of quirky friends for support.  She begins to discover what its like to be single and the benefits of it.  However, this journey is not an easy one for Peas from kissing random guys in clubs to realizing that it’s not always about her.  When Peas finds the problem of attracting more than unacceptable men she begins to open more and more wounds from her past, and so begins her self discovery.

The reader meets an array of characters from the non-English speaking café owner to Peas’ flamboyant Italian roommate.  From her eccentric father to her New-Age healing mother, Peas has more than enough to deal with.

Laurian Clemence takes the reader on a journey of self discovery, life and love.  Mushy Peas on Toast is full of quirky characters to help Peas through her ordeal as well as copious amounts of alcohol, karaoke, and hilarious moments that have the reader clutching their stomach in laughter.  Whipping through the Jo’burg party scene with such a cast of characters its hard not to support Peas throughout the book.

This book is entertaining in all its glory.  With all the stupid moments and comedy it’s hard to believe that all that clumsiness and downright funny can happen to one person.  A bright striking cover makes you want to cuddle up, with a cup of tea and laugh until you cry.

I give it 7 out of 10.

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