Wednesday, August 13, 2014
How to Build A Girl by Caitlin Moran
How to Build a Girl is the story of an overweight teen named Johanna Morrigan..a girl who has never been kissed, who doesn't cause any trouble, who fades in to the wallpaper. After a humiliating experience reciting poetry on TV, Johanna decides that life for her must change and she begins by changing her name to Dolly Wilde… she begins to build her life into what she wants it to be.
Johanna's family with five children is on the brink of real poverty, her dad is a washed up wanna be rocker , an alcoholic, on the dole for being "disabled".
Her mom seems to be oblivious to all the strife, but in her defense here she is with three children and just delivers a set of twins. Johanna, or rather Dolly, gets a job writing reviews for a music mag ( to save the family from ruin) and there the change of life truly begins. To fit in with these guys at the magazine, she must smoke, drink, and carry on as an adult, even though she is only 16. When she writes her first big review of wacked-out rocker John Kite , the other writers think she was too soft on him and her work falls off. In order to keep the work coming, she decides to become the most hated band reviewer ever…writing scathing reviews that made most bands cower at the site of her..all dressed in black wearing a top hat as a trademark. To further her new identity, she beds most of the rockers she meets and gives reviews at the water cooler trying to impress all with "Dolly Wilde's" wild life. But, is this really how to build a girl?
As I read along, it was like reading about a train headed for a granite wall. The drinking, the smoking, the drugs, the sex..she is just a kid…I was waiting for this horrific crash….
Caitlin Moran was born Catherine..she changed her name when she was just a young teen..and it is pronounced "Cat-lin" just to be set apart from the others. She also worked at a music magazine as a teen..see where I am headed? She writes what she knows, that is why her books are so worth reading.
Moran's book will be on shelves in September.