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I am currently writing a book, in the endless, empty hours of the day. It's about a very fat girl who rides a dragon around the world and through time, doing good deeds. The first chapter is about her going back to 1939 and making Hitler see the error of his ways, via a very impassioned speech and cry. There's also a huge bit about the Black Death, which I prevent by introducing stringent quarantine conditions on merchant ships sailing into major British ports. I'm very into the idea of sorting things out through superior paperwork. This is my favorite transformatory power.Reading Caitlin Moran is like meeting a soulmate. Although I didn't grow up poor in Wolverhampton -- like the main character of How to Build a Girl, Johanna Morrigan -- I was always the chubby kid with the big dreams of becoming a writer. In fact, sometimes, I think that if I could go back and do my teenage years again, I would become a music journalist, which is just what Johanna wants to be. The difference is that Johanna finds her passion for writing about music when she decides that she needs to save her family from abject poverty after accidentally revealing to her elderly neighbor that her alcoholic, failed-musician father is receiving disability benefits. In her imagination, she has ruined her family, and so she must fix it by building a life for herself that is bigger than the one she is living.
I've read Moran's collection of essays, Moranthology, so I know that she is a great music journalist. Her writing there, just as in this book, is lively and quirky. She has a fantastic, conversational voice, although it is definitely raw (just in case that isn't your thing). Quite a few times while reading the book, my husband had to ask what I was snickering about. I highly recommend her writing to all once-lonely teenage girls, Anglophiles, and music journalists at heart.
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Title: How to Build a GirlAuthor: Caitlin Moran
Publisher: Harper Collins
Where I got it: From the publisher and TLC Book Tours