Book Review: Nice is just a Place in France by The Betches

When I worked in a bookstore Nice is just a Place in France by The Betches flew off the shelves.

Masses of twenty-somethings, all looking like extras from the movie Mean Girls, pouted when the shelf was bare. Yes, they pouted.

This humor book, based on the website Betches Love This, but Nice Is Just a Place in France
should only be read as entertainment value.

The reason I say this, if you were to take this book and followed their advice to the letter you would be dead.

The art of “blacking out” from drinking is covered over many pages. It even goes so far as to give the history of “Betches” and blacking out.

Talk of taking drugs recreationally, even saying outright that the writers where high when they write it is a little shocking.

I do know however, as a humor book, this is no more than a soft-covered version of a stand up comedy routine. All shock and giggles.

What I also do know that there are people that live and breathe this as reality.

I have dealt with the “Betch” all my life.

What is a Betch? A Betch is a person who has boys wrapped around their fingers, who is (and I am paraphrasing now as their definition makes the life of a Betch sound wonderful and magical) so self-centred that if the world doesn’t recognize that she rolled out of bed before noon than she will throw the world biggest temper tantrum.

I, growing up the nice girl, is a shunned aspect in the book. The book makes me out to be a weak person that should just bow down to their kind.

I remember one of these such Betches when I was in grade 4.

It was track and field and I had finished second in a race. Well the Betch who came in 4th beside me didn’t want to be 4th so she argued with the person taking down the numbers that she was second. When I said that I was second, she just screamed “no you aren’t, I am”.

I already had a shirt covered in first place and second place ribbons, what’s one ribbon to a girl who clearly had none. But then her friends followed suit, and my 4th became a 6th. That was my first time that I ever finished that low in a race.

Does it matter, in the grand scheme, no. The world is no better or worse because I let someone who desperately needed that ribbon more than I did, have one.

But now as I get older, I see Betches everywhere.

They don’t want to work, just get their paycheck and stand around. When they are asked to work they pretend that they are not feeling well and have to sit down. I have worked with so many of them over the years.

The Betches site is not tamer than the book. Videos that were taken down by YouTube because of their “adult” content.

The comments that the readers leave for each other show no respect for people’s feelings, opinions or the English language.

I did have a good laugh reading it out loud to Amanda, but since we are self described nice girls we are saddened that this is what girls read and take to heart.

I have a daughter, who is 4 turning 5 very soon. I look at her and think, if she behaved like the girls in this book I would make sure that she understood that those actions (drugs, heavy alcohol consumption and the using of men) are not acceptable.

She uses her manners, and when she has little diva meltdown (which is acceptable at the age of 4, not 24) that she goes to her room and calms down.

This all being said, it’s a funny book if, and only if you look at it as fiction. A funny look at high maintenance girls. Think Jersey Shore, those girls were Betches.  They might have been funny then, but aren’t relatable now, they have had their fifteen minutes.

However, if you are looking to this book as a self-help, way of life? Put the book down, and walk away.

There are healthier books, and blogs to read.