Lady ad copywriter's boyfriend sleeps with a man?
February 4, 2009 8:56 AM   Subscribe

Dated Young Adult Book Filter: Ad copywriter's boyfriend sleeps with a man?

Okay, this isn't much to go on, but I reckon it's work a shot (especially considering AskMeFi's track record on such things). My friend wrote on Facebook about a book that had a huge effect on her as a child, and I'd love to try and find it for her:

Around 1991 I read a novel about a woman who worked as an ad copywriter and it seemed like the best job ever. I've forgotten the name of this book but remember practically everything else about it and have looked for it sporadically over the past few years without success. It's probably been burned - it was so dated that when the copywriter found out her boyfriend had slept with a man, she naturally assumed she had AIDS.
posted by Jonathan Harford to Media & Arts (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
This is my best guess. Do you or her remember what background / ethnicity the protag was?
posted by trotter at 9:15 AM on February 4, 2009

Best answer: Fifty Percent Off: A Novel of Love in the Age of Packaging.

Here's some of the review:

``Becoming involved in a relationship is a lot like being lured into a Hare Krishna cult''--so begins this long narrative necklace of good-natured one-liners posing as a novel of twentysomething love. Sasha Schwartz is a wisecracking young N.Y.C. ad-agency ``creative director'' in charge of writing toothpaste and paper- towel commercials. She spends her free time (i.e., most of the time her boss isn't watching her) talking on the phone with girlfriends Viv and Frannie and writing jingles about her ex-boyfriend, Bryce, who has recently left her--she suspects for a man named Glen, whose letters she's found in the apartment she and Bryce shared. (``Girl meets boy/Then boy meets boy/That's the story line these days/Oh, it's no joy/To love a gay,'' goes a typical ditty.) That's the plot; and the only event in the next 250 pages that could possibly be seen as an advancement of that plot is when Sasha runs into Bryce in a bar and is introduced to Glen, who is blond-haired, miniskirted, voluptuous, and very much a female. (Oh, well--so much Sasha's previous obsessional worries about AIDS.)
posted by Siobhan at 9:21 AM on February 4, 2009

(I notice now that "Fifty Percent Off" seems to have been first published in 1993, so it is a little later than your friend was thinking of -- but it seems like a good fit otherwise.)
posted by Siobhan at 9:23 AM on February 4, 2009 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Siobhan, I am so confident your answer is correct I have just ordered a signed copy from!

And if it's not, well, she'll have something new to read and I'm out $5.
posted by Jonathan Harford at 11:52 AM on February 4, 2009

Hooray! Come back and tell us if it ends up being the book she remembered.
posted by Siobhan at 1:52 PM on February 4, 2009

Response by poster: It was the right book! I gave it to her last night and the phrase "best present ever" got bandied about a fair amount. Apparently she'd spent a fair amount of time trying to find it!

Thanks so much, Siobhan!
posted by Jonathan Harford at 5:40 AM on February 14, 2009 [1 favorite]

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