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Seeing as I've just looked at my library account and realised I have to pay £7.20 for the library books that are overdue, I thought that I might as well review my favourite one, even if just to make the fine worth while! Fine aside, I did really enjoy this book and would definitely recommend it to anyone who wants a light-hearted, girly read.
The book is centred on the life of 'WAG' Tracie Martin, a woman who's no longer a spring chicken but strives to compete with the other 'elite' WAGs who surround her. Tracie is married to Dean, a footballer who is past his best and spends more time sitting on the substitutes bench than playing on the pitch. Other character's in the novel include the exotically named Paskia, Dean and Tracie's young daughter, Nell, Dean's eccentric grandmother who causes trouble with her mates in the nursing home, Simon, an editor who is clearly besotted with Tracie and Tracie's mother, who is constantly causing trouble.
The novel describes Tracie's everyday life as she attempts to write a guide to being a WAG for girls who are just starting out on the hunt for a footballer. After her 'serious' articles are perceived as tongue in cheek by the british public and Tracie becomes a celebrity in her own right, she begins to write professionally, with the help of editor Simon. The story follows her journey from being stuck up and trashy, obsessed with appearances to realising the error of (some) of her ways.
At the start of this book, I wasn't too impressed and it took me a while to get into it. The character of Tracie really bugged me at the start with her disgustingly outrageous outfits and shallow attitude to life. As the story went on however, her character changed as she became more accepting of her husband's desire to leave football and her daughter's dislike of the WAG lifestyle.
I was definitely taking this book too seriously when I first started reading it. After the first few chapters however, you realise that you need to take everything Tracie says with a pinch of salt and recognise Alison Kervin's subtle 'micky-taking' of the WAG phenomenon. As a regular reader of celebrity magazines, I get fed up with constantly seeing footballers wives and girlfriends on every page and Kervin highlights the ridiculous lifestyles of some of these women.
My favourite character in the book has to be Nell, Dean's grandmother, as her antics with her two friends in their nursing home forms a humourous sideline to the main plot.Naturally, my least favourite has to be Tracie's mum as she is completely manipulative and money grabbing and provides an example of what Tracie could have become if she had let the nasty side of the WAG world pull her in.
One of the things that I really like about this book is the fact that Kervin includes references to real life WAGs such as Victoria Beckham and Coleen Rooney. This makes the book seem more realistic and it is funny to read about Tracie's fictional meetings with the most elite WAGs.
Something I wasn't too keen on was the role of Simon, the editor as his involvement seemed to be a bit pointless. It was obvious throughout the book that he fancied Tracie and I was expecting some sort of affair to happen, however this controversy seemed to fade away for no reason and I wanted Kervin to make more of this.
I took this book on holiday and it made a great read by the pool. You definitely won't like this book if you like a serious, deep plot, but if you fancy a girly read then go for it!
Price : £2.99 from Amazon
Living on a remote island, there isnt much in the way of book shops, so I take my books to swop at Noodies on the beach. I chose the wags diary because it looked like it might be easy reading which is what you want when you are lazing on the beach.
The book is based around Tracie, a WAG (wives and girlfriends) of Luton Town player Dean. They have 1 child Paskia Rose who is very into playing football and not at all wag like which tracie isnt very happy about to start with. Dean is failing in his football career and looking for a new job whilst tracie enjoys manicures, visiting various salons, and trying to outdo the slag wags who she hates.
Tracies mother is a nasty piece of work, and even more obsessed with image and status than Tracie is. Deans grandmother on the other hand is a lovely woman and very supportive of them all. I found myself getting very attached to Nell and the mad actions that her and her sunnyside sheltered home friends get up to. Tracie also grows on you throughout the book.
Tracie and her wag friends come up with the idea that she should write a wags handbook because she knows all there is to know about becomming a wag. Where this idea goes makes quite a good story, and it did actually make me laugh out loud in places.
It flows quite well as a story and I read it in 2 days on the beach. If you like light stories about inane subjects such as wags then you will love it. It also helps if you read gossip magazines and therefore understand what tracie is talking about when she describes how wags should look and act. It is very true to real life!
The cover is pink and purple with a silhouette of a wag, its quite a thick book although it wont take you long to read.
This book was free as I swopped it, but it retails in Australia for around $15.
I read this book a while ago after borrowing it from my local library. I wouldn't say that I was enamoured with it, but it certainly passed the time reading it.
This isn't your typical novel, as there isn't any real plot to speak of. The book follows the life of fictional football WAG Tracie. For the most part, it details the goings on in her life, although the plot comes in the form of events such as losing a family member, landing a column dishing out advice to prospective WAGS and her daughter's desire to become a footballer. The main focus of attention is Tracie herself though - hardly surprising I suppose given that this is her diary!
Tracie prides herself on being a WAG even though her footballer husband Dean plays for the less than prestigious Luton Town and has the claim to fame of having played for the England team on precisely one occasion. During the course of the book, he finds himself benched so there is even a question of whether she is technically a WAG or not! Tracie was a very irritating character to begin with, and one that was solely interested in what she looked like and what kind of impression she gave to other people. To be honest, she matched every stereotype that I've ever had about WAGS - right down to the Alex Curran style fashion faux pas outfits. Despite that, I got the impression that she genuinely loves Dean and isn't just in love with the lifestyle (which is probably just as well given that he's not had much experience of the top flight and they don't live the Premier League lifestyle). If I'm being brutally honest, he doesn't even sound like a very good footballer!
As the diary progressed, I found myself warming to her as she was a quite amusing character, albeit unintentionally for much of the time. She really comes into her own when she lands her column, particularly as most people think that her advice is tongue-in-cheek when it is actually genuinely serious. To appreciate Tracie's character, you really have to see her as a parody character. If you tried to take her seriously, I can see how she would be beyond irritating but I don't think that she was ever meant to be a 'real' or particularly believable character.
That said, there are deeper aspects to her character. There are mentions of her difficult childhood and she has a touching relationship with Nell (Dean's grandmother), to whom she turns to for advice when life doesn't go according to plan.
It's a very easy book to read, as you'd probably expect from a book that is supposed to be a WAGs diary. Without meaning to sound too stereotypical, WAGS aren't seen as being particularly intelligent so it would be strange if this was anything other than very straightforward.
The Wag's Diary is a book that was lent to me by a friend when I had nothing else to read. They had gotten it free in a magazine. When I finished the book, I was very glad that neither of us had spent any money on it!
The Wag's Diary is centred on wag's as you might expect from the title. For those of you who don't know, a 'wag,' is the term used to refer to the wives and girlfriends of footballers. They all have a very stereotypical image of being thick, very skinny and using their husbands money to go on countless shopping sprees. Its safe to say that this book does nothing to disprove the stereotypes, and in fact encourages them. However, this book must be written in a slightly tongue in cheek or parody way because surely theres no way that people could actually be like this! The only point about this is that you do get a few laughs at these people, and how much knowledge they seem to lack!
The plot follows Tracie Martin, faithful WAG for 12 years wife of Dean who's the captain of Luton Town. Her life is full of lunches that lack food, fake tan sessions and cheering her husband on. It just seems to go on for so long, and has so many pointless parts which could have not been included. The characters weren't written at all well, even if it is meant to be tongue in cheek they were all ridiculously annoying especially the main character Tracie and I have to wonder why anyone would want to read a book like this. It just shows how society is getting these days, when the most important thing in someone's life is if their skirt is short enough to see their knickers.
The only positive about this book I can think of other than that I didn't spend any money on it is that its written in a diary form so if you actually did like it then you could dip in and out of it since theres no long chapters.
Overall, I would definitely recommend that you don't read it, it was an utter waste of my time and I will never get those hours of my life back!
This is one of my favourite books of all time! I read this after reading its sequel (wrong way round I know!) WAG abroad a few months ago.
The book follows Tracie Martin, the wife of a Luton Town football player Dean. The book is written as though it is a diary-you get the date of the events but it is not as though Tracie has actually written it. The book is in first person. The reader follows Tracie in her day to day activities which often compromise of shopping, chasing Victoria Beckham around, having sunbeds and going for drinks with friends.
However, Tracie also has a number of more important events that take place in the book such as finding out the truth about her father, losing a loved one and being asked by the Daily Mail to write a weekly collum about how to be a WAG and then in turn landing a book deal. People take Tracies collums as pure comedy and she fails to see why as she is being entirely honest and truthful!
If you are looking for a book to amuse you, this is bound to succeed! Tracies tips on how to be a WAG are hilarious, as is the way she goes about her day to day life. The reader will often find they connect with Tracie despite being completely different to her.
Alison Kervin writes a hillarious novel which you wont want to put down!
I like to read, but not high brow think hard books. This book came out a couple of years ago and has had a follow up called A Wag Abroad. I enjoyed this book, but think that probably a lot of people may have poured scorn on it.
The Wag in question is Tracie Martin. She is a footballers wife and hes husband Dean is captain of Luton FC. So that makes her queen Wag. I'm sure most of us read about Wag's on a daily basis in the newspapers and magazines. All they seem to do it get their hair done, nails done, sunbeds, shopping and so on, and Tracie is just like that.
Tracie lives for going to the hairdressers, then getting acrylic nails, followed by a boozy lunch, which she doesn't eat anyway so it's just drink after drink. Most days she gets home the worse for wear and although we shouldn't laugh, it is a comical portrayal of this kind of lifestyle.
Tracie has 1 daughter Paskia-Rose and she's 11. Unfortunately she's not into the beauty and pamper lifestyle, she's rather play football. Of course Tracie can't understand this and although she tries to be a good mum, Paskia tends to keep her at arms lenght, as Tracie is a bit embarrassing to her.
What's embarrassing about Tracie? Well her clothes to start with. it has to be short, tight and if it flashes her knickers - or lack of, then she's more than happy. her skin is the colour of sunburnt tangerines, and her hair is the colour of bright yellow. That's how it should be accordng to Tracie.
Sounds like Tracie has a life we would all dream about? She's upset. What on earth does she have to be upset about? Well the other Wag's are getting younger and Tracie finds she's not getting as much attention as what she's had, or what she likes. Also since Tracie is pretty ditzy, we see through the book that people take advantage of her, which is clear for us to see, but Tracie thinks everyone is friendly.
I like the storyline of the book and although it isn't rocket science, it is endearing and we find that although Tracie could get anything she wants, she is simple at heart and just needs some honest, decent people around her.
This book is by Alison Kervin and I think is well worth a read, then a follow up with the next chapter in tracie's life
Through the very productive book club that myself and a couple of my friends run through work I managed to finally get my hands on this little gem of a book.
Getting a little jaded from reading my normally favourite "salt of the earth" wartime books, where the families managed to live on three pence halfpenny a month, this new book made a very welcome change!
The book I will now review is "The wags diary, by Alison Kervin"
My friend had previously read it, and through our morning coffee break at work she couldn't stop herself from laughing out loud in places, even telling us the barest of details, giving the general jist of the chapter, without spoiling the story for me, of course I requested the book next!
The book starts with the (in the first half of the book anyhow), very annoying character of Tracie Martin.
Tracie has been married for the best part of ten years to one time England footballer Dean Martin (and when I say one time, I mean he played once!).
Now he is now team captain of Luton Town, making Tracie top dog Wag, a title she is proud to have.
After a particularly in depth conversation with a new and slightly wet behind the ears wannabe Wag, Tracie is encouraged to write down her little pearls of Waggish wisdom, thus enabling the future wags an incite into her world.
Then tragedy strikes, Dean is suddenly put on the bench and is disillusioned with the whole game, this in turn threatens Tracie's whole way of life.
The final nail in the coffin is when Tracie's daughter Paskia-Rose comes clean about her love of football, unfortunately for Tracie it is actually a love of the game itself and not hanging around at stadiums trying to get a footballer husband, what will she do next?
This book is absolutely fantastic! At the beginning you get a real dislike for Tracie and her frivolous ways, only interested in her designer clothes and her designer baby , she is exactly how I imagine most of the real life Wags to be.
It isn't until her so called "Wags diary" reaches the ears of a national newspaper, is more of her childhood revealed. This starts to explain the neglect and hate shown to her by her own mother (another Wag!).
You suddenly feel compassion for the main character, and you are then subjected to a complete turnabout in feelings towards her, especially when Dean admits is so miserable at Luton that he wants to leave football for good, even with this, knowing that she will lose her Wag queen crown, she supports her husband in his new ventures, showing a very innocent side to her character.
Finally the fact that this book is hysterical helps also, there is a particular scene which involves Tracie, Posh spice, Geri Halliwell and a pack of raw bacon that left me crying with laughter!
This book was free with one of my friends Glamour magazines, though I am sure it is available to be bought, try Ebay, they seem to sell everything else!
There is the follow on book, A Wag abroad available for purchase now for the price of £3.50 from Asda, my next read I feel!
Please read this if you get the chance, this is such a refreshing read, funny and light, a true delight!
For more information visit - www.wagsdiary.com/traciemartin
Thanks for reading x
Like one of the other reviewers on here, I read this because I got a free copy with Glamour magazine - NOT my usual cup of tea.
I found the first half hard to swallow, finding the weak attempts at humour to be grating and badly constructed. However, having nothing else to read on the train, I persevered, and it struck me that the author might actually be writing a cynical and well-written expose of the sort of woman who would compromise her intelligence for the opportunity to have unlimited access to fake tan and bling. There were just a few hints that the main character was in fact a shrewd operator, hiding her light under a bushel and cynically writing her column to appear more air-headed than she is.
However, the character and plot development were so weak in places that I found myself considering buying a paper from the train shop just to have something to read that didn't feel like brain rot. Can't say it's up there with dickens...
Tracie and Dean are the Posh and Becks of Luton Town FC - him as captain of the team, her as queen of the WAGs. A veteran with some 12 (shhhh) years experience, Tracie knows all there is to know about being a footballer's wife, and is happy to help the new, inexperienced girls find their way through a maze of fake tan, killer heels and skirts so short they'd show your pants if you were actually wearing any. When one of these newbies suggests she publish her wisdom she initially dismisses the idea - she's a WAG, not a writer - but with a little encouragement she soon finds herself in a brand new world of blogs, magazine columns and TV appearances.
Tracie truly has her own style, be it in her fashion (everything short and tight, and only pink or white, the more tassels the better), her make-up (if you're not yet scaring small children, you're not yet done) or her "interesting" take on the English language (she fears being 'ostrich-sized'... that would be just 'ludo-cross'). And yet, underneath all the glitter, acrylic and spidery eyelashes, you can't help but empathise with Tracie. She may not be the sharpest eyebrow pencil in the box, but she clearly has good intentions deep down. Her lifestyle is like child-sized porcelain clowns weeping silently at either side of a gold plated fireplace - totally, appallingly frightfully awful, but something you can't tear your attention away from nonetheless...
As her real life hits problem after problem - a wayward mother, a tomboyish daughter, a husband with a penchant for own goals, a group of thinner, younger slag WAGs - her writing world where people are lapping up her wisdom becomes more and more appealing. If only she could figure out what they also seem to find her serious, insightful pieces so hilariously funny.
Before this book arrived, I was expecting it to be bog-standard, slightly cringe worthy, Katie Price-ish chick lit that would be easy to read but not exactly entertaining. Instead, I found this book quite incredibly brilliant. Everything is so exaggerated, so bright and shiny and permatanned, that you know it's meant to be a tongue in cheek look at this WAGy world, and some of the incidents Tracie is unintentionally responsible for are outrageously comical. As a heroine she is just the right level of dense - enough so you can believe the things she ends up doing and saying, but not too much that it's totally unfeasible that there could be people out there like her. I loved the slap-stick style comedy of her conversations -
"You could be huge!" gushes her writing coach.
"Stop saying that," begs a body-conscious Tracie.
I think people are going to underestimate the skill required to write a book such as this. Just as it probably takes Britney hours of preparation to look that trashy, I could imagine this book taking ages to craft so that the friendly, I'm-having-a-conversation-with-you story leaps off the page. Tracie talks in a way you can imagine to be quite authentic for some, but which I'm 100% certain is not the voice of the former Times journalist who penned the book.
Reading this, the voice and approach of Tracie were reminiscent of Becky Bloomwood in the Sophie Kinsella "Shopaholic" series, which I also really like. "The Motherhood Walk of Fame" is also a similar book exploring the life of a minor celeb who makes it big through their writing. But I think you should give Tracie and Dean a go first, even if you're hesitant, because they are much more welcoming and enjoyable and educational than you might think from the title.
This review originally appeared under my name on www.thebookbag.co.uk
I have just finished reading The Wags Diary!! Now, I like to consider myself something of an intellectual so before you start to judge there are two reasons why I even picked up this book:
1. I borrowed it from a friend so did not actually purchase it myself.
2. The lead Wag character's husband plays for Luton Town and I am a Luton Town supporter so wanted to see if it contained any information about the Hatters!
The Wag's diary is a fiction book that capitalises on this nations love and/or hate of WAGS (Wives and Girlfriends for those of you who don't know what it means). Basically the term was coined during the last football World Cup where the wags of the players got more attention and press coverage than their men did. They shopped, drank and tanned for England and had there been a trophy for the most glamorous, most pointless girls at the tournament they would most definitely have one. They go to prove that having money does not mean you have style or class, think orange tans, outlandish "designer" clothes.
Anyway, back to the book which I believe was commissioned by Glamour magazine. According to them they call it, "A laugh a minute, tongue in cheek homage to the British phenomenon that is the WAG, fans of Katie Price and Glamour won't want to put this down."
It follows the story of Tracie Martin, wife of the captain of Luton Town Football Club who considers herself queen of the WAG's. Her skirts are shorter, her tan is darker and her brain is smaller than any other WAG on the team. When fortunes don't seem to be going her way she decides to take matters into her own hands and starts a column in the local papers advising potential WAGS on how to dress and act etc. It becomes an overnight success but she can't work out why people think she is being funny and ironic when she is just acting like herself.
I know this book is described as tongue in cheek and it is trying to be ironic but the ironic thing is that it isn't, it's just really bad. The writing is so basic that it just makes it really awful to read. I know it's meant to be Tracie talking and speaking but it is just very very basic. The story line is not particularly good and is also very predictable. The so called funny parts of the book just turn out rather sad. There is a part in the book when Tracie tries to meet her idol Posh but it doesn't end up working very well and in the end just sounds like a bad trashy gossip magazine. This book will not be relevant in a few years as it just talks about real life people who no - one will remember in a while.
I mean, I get it, I get that it is trying to be funny but for me it just isn't. I like hair and makeup like the next person and I see that she is trying to write a book about a subject half of the female population in this country strive to be but to me it's just bad. I like chick lit, I love Bridget Jones but this book is not even in the same league.
At times during the book we are given reason to perhaps see Tracie in a better light and understand why she dresses the way she does. She was unloved as a child and thinks of herself as ugly and so dresses to attract attention but the book did not capitalise on this and in my opinion is not intelligent enough to develop the characters any further. There is a nice relationship in the book between Tracie and her husbands Grandmother, Nell who is the person Tracie turns to when she needs a bit of love and advice. There were parts that were quite heart-warming but again could have been developed a lot better.
The writer, Alison Kervin has apparently written biographies of Clive Woodward, Jason Leonard and Denise Lewis. This is the first book and her debut fiction book and then the follow-up is a WAGs diary in Los Angeles.
The cover of the book is quite snazzy. It is pink (a WAGS favourite colour) and purple and has a silhouette of a very thin woman in extremely high heels on it with footballs around her to signify the football connection. It's about 250 pages long and took me about a day to finish it.
Funny thing was, at the end I found myself almost rooting for Tracie and wanting her to do well and find her place in life. She does actually endear herself to the readers and you end up feeling sorry for her because she really knows no better. Let's see what a life in Los Angeles will lead to......
Shamefully i havent read anything other than the odd gossip magasine in years .. i lost interest in reading real books a long time ago, i think the problem is i was reading the same old thing and didnt realise there were books out there which would suit my interests. Anyway i got this book free a coupe of months ago with a copy of Glamour magazine, so i thought why not.. and no word of a lie it insantly gripped my attention and i couldnt put it down, i took it everywhere with me untill it was finished ... quite a dramatic change for someone who hasnt read a book in a very long time!
THe shock i had when the book actually made me laugh!!! ive never expirienced this and didnt think that was possible, and it also brought a tear to my eye..
A great book cleverly written, ill admit its not for everyone but as an 18 year old girl it met all my requirements for a good read :) very impressed so much so that ive ordered the next one (A WAG abroad) of amazon and paid for it myself instead of waiting to get my dad to buy it for me!
Normally this is not a book I would have even considered reading, but I got a copy free with last months Glamour magazine, so thought I would give it a shot.
Tracie Martin is wife of Luton Town footballer Dean Martin, who is also team captain. Married for 12 years with a daughter, Paskia Rose, Tracie is considered queen WAG (the nickname given to Wives and Girlfriends of football players in case you're not familiar).
With her tiny micro skirts, brassy blonde hair extensions, and luminous orange tan, Tracie's life is a whirlwind of hair appointments, spray tans and shopping trips. She has a nightmare of a mother, Angie, who despite being in her fifties, often wears shorter skirts and has longer hair extensions than Tracie, and constantly wants to be the centre of attention with the football players.
Tracie is very close to Dean's nan, Nell, who brought him up and now lives in an old people's home. Tracie visits her and Nell's two close friends, Ethel and Gladys regularly, much to the annoyance of her mother who does not like the fact Tracie is so close to them.
When Tracie notices that there are several new WAG's at Luton Town who are not embracing the WAG way of life - for example, some of them (shock, horror!) actually wear trousers rather than skirts - she decides to write a handbook for WAG's explaining how a new WAG should live her life. She enrols on a writing course, and along with some help from Simon, her tutor, embarks on a new career as an author.
Can Tracie finish her book? And what will happen when Dean starts scoring lots of own goals and spends more time on the bench than on the pitch? Is Tracie's title of Queen WAG under threat??
~What I thought~
I must admit I found this novel pretty stupid in places. Well, OK, pretty much all the way through if I'm honest. Tracie is your stereotypical blonde bimbo airhead, but I feel that the author was trying too hard to make the character funny. Tracie often gets her words mixed up, which in some places is amusing, but at other times I found it really cringy - for example when she refers to a laptop as 'That lap-dancing machine thingy'. It just seems a pathetic attempt at humour and too over the top for my liking. It's pretty much like that throughout the whole book though, so be warned.
The story, was actually a lot more readable than I had anticipated. Tracie (despite her silliness) is actually quite a likeable character, and it is obvious that she is just very naïve and blinkered and means no harm to anyone. She is actually very caring and obviously loves her family, even her mother, who is a very dislikeable character - constantly criticising her daughter and putting her down.
The relationship Tracie has with her mother makes a quite interesting story as does Tracie's relationship with Nell. There are some twists and turns in the plot, but most come towards the end of the book so I feel I cannot go into too much detail in case I spoil it for anyone.
The ending, without revealing what it was, I thought was quite disappointing. In fact I felt that the story just sort of stopped in the middle of no-where and was a bit of an anti-climax.
Overall, despite the fact I've been slightly negative about it, I was quite surprised at how much I enjoyed the book, and I wouldn't mind reading the sequel, 'A WAG abroad', however I would probably borrow a copy from the library rather than paying good money for it! If you're looking for a light, easy to read novel, then this is one to consider - although bear in mind what I have said about the constant air-headedness and silly attempts at humour, as I can see that not everyone would be able to put up with them!
This can be purchased for £5.49 from Amazon.co.uk