People Like Her
Review: Chantel Erfort
Emmy Jackson is Mamabare. Instagram influencer extraordinaire.
Once a magazine industry “it-girl” (is that term still cool to use?), Emmy started her foray into social media influencing with a fashion shoe blog.
But now that she’s writing about the struggles of motherhood, and how “we’re all just doing the best we can with what we have”, her footwear is a lot more practical, her make-up and hair a lot less stylish.
This, however, doesn’t mean that there isn’t a lot of effort that goes into putting together her look.
People Like Her, written by husband and wife Paul Vlitos and Collette Lyons who write under the pseudonym Ellery Lloyd, gives a glimpse into just how much work goes into making it look like you’re being authentic on social media and creating that following of millions that you’d like everyone to believe you grew “organically”.
The point is to sell to your followers, without them realising this is happening.
The point is to seem relatable while still being someone others aspire to be like.
Married to struggling writer Dan whose first book was a huge hit and is now buckling under the pressure to produce another, Emmy’s life revolves around picture-perfect moments with her family and pushing the products of companies that sponsor her.
And, of course, there’s the “pod” – other mom bloggers who ensure that each one is tagged and hashtagged as they promote the different facets of #momlife.
On the surface everything looks perfect, but in reality, Dan is resentful of Emmy’s fame and that she’s achieved it through writing something as seemingly simple as Instagram posts.
He’s also slowly reaching the end of his tether that their family life is constantly being put on display and the emergence of an Instagrammer posting images of his daughter which have not been made public, pushes Dan to the edge.
As Emmy’s popularity grows and new opportunities come her way, she reveals just how far she will go to ensure her own success.
The book is written from three perspectives – that of Emmy, Dan and an unnamed person, who, it soon emerges, has a deep-seated grudge against Emmy.
As the book progresses, this person’s identity is revealed and we are let into the reason for this grudge.
While People Like Her is pretty predictable, it’s an easy, enjoyable read if you’re looking for something that doesn’t require too much cerebral engagement.
But beware not to roll your eyes too hard when you read about how seriously these influencers take themselves.