The Plot (from Goodreads):
On the same day Bells Walker learns that her IUD has failed, her husband Harry is denied tenure at his Manhattan university. So Bells, Harry, their two adolescent children, and her baby bump move to New York’s Hudson Valley, where Harry has landed a job at Dutchess College in the town of Pigkill.
When the farm-to-table utopia Bells envisioned is anything but, she turns to the blogosphere. Under the pen name the County Dutchess, she anonymously dishes about life in Pigkill, detailing the activities of hypercompetitive parents and kombucha-drinking hipsters. Suddenly, Bells has a place to say all the things she’s been secretly thinking about being a wife and mother. As Bells turns the focus of her blog on her new neighbors, her readership continues to grow, but her scandalous posts hit closer to home: she puts Harry’s new job in jeopardy, derails her children’s lives, and risks the one real friendship she’s built.
When Bells uncovers scandals right under her nose, the Dutchess goes viral, and soon everyone is asking, Who is the County Dutchess? Now Bells has to ask herself if it’s worth losing the people closest to her to finally feel noticed by everyone else.
This book had me laughing right from the beginning at Bells’ wit. I loved that it was set in Dutchess county. That’s where my boyfriend’s family is from, and I am hoping he ends up at Vassar for his residency! I’m no hipster by any means, but farmer’s markets and fancy coffee shops are two of my favorite things.
I liked Bells a lot, although I can definitely understand why some readers won’t. I thought she was witty and funny, even though she did make some decidedly bad decisions. Bells’ columns were hilarious, as was her hunt for blog topics. I can totally understand getting sucked in by social media! Where she messed up, though, was using her friends as blog fodder and not considering what the fallout would do to her children. If she was a little less selfish, her blog could have been funny satire without being harmful to others…but then our book would have no plot!
I do think there could have been more to the ending, and more about Bells’ kids. After all this buildup, the ending seemed rushed and I felt like Bells got off too easily.
Overall, this was a light, enjoyable read about farmers markets, fancy coffee, and moms behaving badly.