I find myself in quite a contradicting situation these days. On the one hand, I’m busier than ever, with school and Tabula RASA up and running. But on the other hand, I’m more lazy than ever, when it comes down to my extracurricular activities. After a long day of lectures, meetings and magazine stuff, I usually don’t really feel like reading the great literary works at the end of the day. Instead, I just like to sit down, relax and browse. That’s right. These days I enjoy to browse through my books. And in the case of “It” (2013), by Alexa Chung, browsing is entertaining, inspiring and relaxing.
Alexa Chung is perhaps best known as a model, for her very public relationship and breakup with Arctic Monkeys frontman Alex Turner, as the face of Longchamp, presenter for British Vogue, style icon and author of the book “It” (2013). I have always been quite fascinated by the character of Alexa Chung, because of her vintage-inspired style, impeccable taste in music and surprising wit (you should really watch the online series she made for British Vogue, it’s brilliant). So when she released her book back in 2013, I was excited . Unfortunately, I couldn’t get it anywhere near me and somehow I never really felt compelled to purchase it online. So after a while, I just forgot about it, as those things go. But when we visited Ghent a couple of weeks ago, I spotted “It” in the bookstore and spontaneously decided to finally buy it.
And I’m sort of glad I did. Confusing statements like these are traditionally followed by similarly confusing explanations, so here we go. Let me start by stating that I really like Alexa Chung’s book. It doesn’t really have a clear story, or plot-line, but roughly follows her life-story, notes on her personal style, her sources of inspiration (everyone from film stars to her grandpa Kwan), funny anecdotes and lifestyle tips. These fragments of texts are accompanied by photographs, illustrations, drawings, scribbles and attempts at scrapbooking (it’s an art form). And it’s the combination of short fragments of texts and imagery that I really like. As mentioned before, “It” (2013) is just a really good book to sit down with and leisurely browse.
As for Alexa Chung’s writing… it’s not really that special. “It” (2013) reads as if you accidentally stumbled upon her diary, opened it on any random page, and started reading. In other words, it doesn’t feel like she put any real conscious thought into actually writing the book, into creating a plot, into creating a coherent story. Instead, it seems as if she put anecdotes, memories and advice together on a big pile, and assembled it into what is now in my hands as “It” (2013). But here’s the interesting thing: it doesn’t really matter. Even without any coherent writing, “It” (2013) is enjoyable to browse (and occasionally read).I personally really enjoyed to read Alexa Chung’s little stories, looking at the photographs of the Spice Girls and her own polaroids, trying to make sense of the scribblings and drawings.
That being said, I do slightly robbed. I think I paid around 15 euros for this book (which is already 5 euros less than the original selling price) and I really feel like I paid too much. I thought “It” (2013) is a fun book to have and to occasionally browse through, but that’s really all it is.