When Edith Wharton labels a little book the "great American novel," it's no longer a little book--it's one that deserves notice. I had never read Gentlemen Prefer Blondes or heard of Anita Loos before a few weeks ago. I had heard of the Marilyn Monroe movie, but hadn't seen it. All in all, until last week I was thoroughly deprived of an amazingly funny story that made me snicker, giggle, chortle, laugh uproariously, and probably grin mischievously when nobody was looking.
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes is the story of Lorelei Lee, along with her friend Dorothy, on a journey across the eastern United States and especially the big hits in Europe (London, Paris, etc.). Lorelei's more pertinent journeys, though, are her attempts to gain upward social mobility, "education" of the mind, and--of course--convincing men to buy her as many sparkly, expensive things as possible. She's hilarious in her honesty (the novel is written as her own diary), just as naive as she is cunning, and possibly the smartest idiot in literature.
The ending was so-so, but the first 90% of the book had already made me fall in love with Loos's writing style and spunk. I recommend this book! I'm not necessarily condoning Lorelei's behavior, p.s. Just loving it between the pages.