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December 8, 2008 | Comments ()


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100 Books in One Year #31: Candy Girl: A Year In the Life of An Unlikely Stripper by Diablo Cody

Cannonball Read / Brian Prisco

Book Reviews | December 8, 2008 | Comments ()


I loved Juno. LOVED IT. I get all wet and squishy for any sort of clever, unrealistic banter wrapped shot out by pseudo-hipsters. It’s why I love Kevin Smith. When I left the theatre, I was happy. I smiled. I don’t fucking smile. I’m a bitter, angry little troll who lives under an bridge, smashing pretty things with my internet connection. I used to be loving and huggable. Now, I am a prickly pear, who fidgets in lines, swears in traffic, and is filled with the brimming hate for my fellow humanity. So when Diablo Cody wrote a happy little film about a smart mouthed preggo and it won her the Academy Award I was THRILLED.

So I enjoyed the hell out of Candy Girl, which I breezed through in basically a day. It’s essentially the book, based on the blog that got her writing screenplays, which won her awards. The language is the same, full of clever little pop-cultural asides and pithy smart ass commentary, interspliced with swear words and big words interchangeably. Hate her all you want, but Cody is a Pajiban. She’s unapologetic, dorky, and crass. And it comes across big time in her writing.

Essentially, Diablo Cody fell in love with a dude on the internet, and moved to Minnesota to be with him. She took a unsatisfying job in a cube farm for an advertising agency. As a lark, she decided to throw caution to the wind and become a stripper. And so the bio basically covers her experiences: how her boyfriend dealt with it/encouraged her, how she kept it secret from her coworkers and friends, and how she as a Second Wave feminist coped with basically being a fucksock for old scraggly dudes for a few dollars. It gives an insight into the world of stripping from an intelligent chick and an awkward dancer.

Again, it reads smart ass and with wonderful style that’s essentially fresh blogging. It’s honest, it’s mean-spirited, and it’s interesting. People want to hate on Diablo Cody, and that’s fine. But the girl’s got style. And it works for this. Most people dismiss her as just that stupid stripper cooze who suckered the Academy into giving her overly precious movie an award. What people fail to realize is, she was a normal person like us, working a shitty desk job, unsure of her life, taking crazy chances. She parlayed her weirdness through a blog into a successful screenwriting career. How the fuck do you not back that? It’s part of the whole hipsters eat their own mentality that pisses me off with the blogosphere.

Candy Girl’s a bit directionless and sort of peters out towards the end, because basically Cody came, undressed, and left. There’s no happy ending or magic lesson learned or greater truth to behold. This dorky punk chick decided to show her goods for cash, and then she wrote about it. That’s about it. But she’s got a voice, and she uses it, and I liked it quite a bit. It’s not going to change your life, but it’s a quick read.

This review is part of the Cannonball Read series. Details are here and the growing number of participants and their blogs are here.



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