Skip to main content

How to Build a Girl: "I wish these cunts knew about Alexander Woollcott."

Caitlin Moran's debut novel How to Build a Girl continues in this delightful readalong hosted by Emily at As the Crowe Flies (and Reads). You should buy this book. Just fyi. It's the pants. And I have made a Spotify playlist for it: How to Build a Girl: The Dolly Wilde Experience. If you've been paying close attention to the book, you will appreciate the hell out of that list. Just saying.

So our heroine is now 16-years-old and a high school dropout, but whatever because she has an impressive job reviewing music and is already an excellent writer who calls the Smashing Pumpkins "the new Emperors of Mournful Grunge." I think we're all pretty positive this is just Caitlin Moran's life, but none of us care, because it is fantastically written.

Thanks, Caitlin, we know.

I don't think a book about teenagers has ever made me relive as much of that time of my life as How to Build a Girl. Shoving brothers off the chair that's used for the one computer? Oh right. I did that. Feeling an IRRESISTIBLE NEED TO EDUCATE PEOPLE because they are just wandering through life sadly ignorant of the joys that could be theirs if they would only listen/read/watch the thing you are trying to force them to like? Well. I mean. That still happens.

Since my mother ruled the house music-wise, though, I never got to listen to music beyond The King and I, and when I was angry at my parents I had only one album with electric guitars, so I would blast the original cast recording of Bat Boy at them. Take that, Mom and Dad. I hope this surrealist Off-Broadway satire makes you rethink not letting me go to the movies.


So I know basically no bands and have been on a quest since age 16 to not stare blankly when someone mentions...basically anyone.  The only song mentioned so far in How to Build a Girl that I've already known is Sixteen Going on Seventeen from Sound of Music. We didn't even watch Annie in my house. I trust Caitlin Moran in the whole rock music area since she was, of course, a music critic. Like her heroine. Who is her. So this book now becomes a fascinating look at early '90s British rock, as guided by a 16-year-old with a penchant for sexual thoughts about Blackadder's noble Lord Flashheart (something I still don't understand).

Maybe I understand it a little

I continue to recommend this book to people and it continues to be swell. Barring some weird left turn, I am completely behind it as a novel. Caitlin Moran should maybe probably write more right now so we can read it when we're done with this what else are we supposed to DO.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Harry Potter 2013 Readalong Signup Post of Amazingness and Jollity

Okay, people. Here it is. Where you sign up to read the entire Harry Potter series (or to reminisce fondly), starting January 2013, assuming we all survive the Mayan apocalypse. I don't think I'm even going to get to Tina and Bette's reunion on The L Word until after Christmas, so here's hopin'.


You guys know how this works. Sign up if you want to. If you're new to the blog, know that we are mostly not going to take this seriously. And when we do take it seriously, it's going to be all Monty Python quotes when we disagree on something like the other person's opinion on Draco Malfoy. So be prepared for your parents being likened to hamsters.

If you want to write lengthy, heartfelt essays, that is SWELL. But this is maybe not the readalong for you. It's gonna be more posts with this sort of thing:


We're starting Sorceror's/Philosopher's Stone January 4th. Posts will be on Fridays. The first post will be some sort of hilarious/awesome que…

How to Build a Girl Introductory Post, which is full of wonderful things you probably want to read

Acclaimed (in England mostly) lady Caitlin Moran has a novel coming out. A NOVEL. Where before she has primarily stuck to essays. Curious as we obviously were about this, I and a group of bloggers are having a READALONG of said novel, probably rife with spoilers (maybe they don't really matter for this book, though, so you should totally still read my posts). This is all hosted/cared for/lovingly nursed to health by Emily at As the Crowe Flies (and Reads) because she has a lovely fancy job at an actual bookshop (Odyssey Books, where you can in fact pre-order this book and then feel delightful about yourself for helping an independent store). Emily and I have negotiated the wonders of Sri Lankan cuisine and wandered the Javits Center together. Would that I could drink with her more often than I have.


INTRODUCTION-wise (I might've tipped back a little something this evening, thus the constant asides), I am Alice. I enjoy the Pleistocene era of megafauna and drinking Shirley Templ…

A synonym for 'Neanderthal' is 'boorish,' which just isn't very nice

So this article came out, which isn't really groundbreaking at all, but it happens to have been published the day after I watched part of the NOVA special "Becoming Human," so it's been on my brain anyway.

I was checking out a book a while ago called Cro-Magnon: How the Ice Age Gave Birth to the First Modern Humans, and it was all "Oh dude, our ancestors probably didn't even LOOK at Neanderthals. No way. 'Cause they would've been like, RIDICULOUSLY ugly."

This book was published in 2010. And what came out this year? DNA Shows Humans Found Non-Humans Irresistible

That's right. Your lady ancestor, at some point, sidled up to a Neanderthal gentleman and said "Hey. How's it goin'?


Because all non-Africans ('cause the Africans stayed put instead of traipsing around becoming the Don Juans of prehistoric Europe) have 1-4% Neanderthal DNA. So the above scenario DEFINITELY happened. Which is disheartening NOT because of my huge Neanderth…