In the tradition of audacious and wryly funny novels like The Idiot and Convenience Store Woman comes the wildly original coming-of-age story of a pregnant pizza delivery girl who becomes obsessed with one of her customers.
Eighteen years old, pregnant, and working as a pizza delivery girl in suburban Los Angeles, our charmingly dysfunctional heroine is deeply lost and in complete denial about it all. She’s grieving the death of her father (who she has more in common with than she’d like to admit), avoiding her supportive mom and loving boyfriend, and flagrantly ignoring her future.
Her world is further upended when she becomes obsessed with Jenny, a stay-at-home mother new to the neighborhood, who comes to depend on weekly deliveries of pickled covered pizzas for her son’s happiness. As one woman looks toward motherhood and the other towards middle age, the relationship between the two begins to blur in strange, complicated, and ultimately heartbreaking ways.
Bold, tender, propulsive, and unexpected in countless ways, Jean Kyoung Frazier’s Pizza Girl is a moving and funny portrait of a flawed, unforgettable young woman as she tries to find her place in the world.
This was SO much more than I was initially thinking it was going to be. I knew it was going to be something I was going to enjoy but wasn’t expecting it to affect me this deep.
This book, as the title suggests, follows Pizza Girl, aka a pregnant 18 year-old girl that delivers pizzas. This story follows her while she tries to deal with too much and failing. Her alcoholic father passed away; her mother and amazing boyfriend altough very supportive are starting to be too much for her; she is pregnant; it’s all just too much, while also dealing with trying to find who she is, and what she wants. She meets Jenny, a mother to an 8yo called Adam, who orders a pizza with pickles on it, even tho it’s not on the menu. She slowly becomes obsessed with Jenny and it spirals into something complicated and dangerous.
This book had so many relatable moments for me right now. I really felt the desperation and frustration of our MC. Even tho she has a lot to be happy for, she just can’t quite grasp it. Her mom and boyfriend do everything for her, but nothing is enough and everything is too much. She can’t grasp the fact that her dad died and she doesn’t know how she should feel about it. There’s too many mixed feelings and she ends up going down the same rabbit hole and drinking, even while pregnant, to try and cope with it all. She doesn’t know how she feels about being pregnant and the outcome of it, if she is even able to be a mother to that child, let alone a good one. She is afraid, feels alone and will grasp at anything to stay afloat, and in comes Jenny.
Jenny seems to be a lost soul. Someone she can see herself with because she feels relatable to her. Someone as torn and conflicted as her. She develops fantasies and an obsession that makes her keep going. But life isn’t always as it seems from simple glimpses delivering a pizza and a few words.
I loved to see our Pizza Girls journey and every stepping stone. It kept me engaged and made me think a lot about my own battles.
There’s a lot more this book could have had, for example more about dealing with one’s identity, but it also had everything I wanted from it. The writing was beautiful. I could feel the emotions and the way they were explained was just perfect. It was, for me, relatable, heartfelt, and unforgettable. I can’t wait to see more from the author!
TW: grief, death of a parent, alcoholism, abuse, pregnancy at a young age, depression, anxiety
Have you read this yet? What do you think of it? Let’s discuss it in the comments below!