How to Build a Girl
What do you do in your teenage years when you realize what your parents taught you wasn't enough? You must go out and find books and poetry and pop songs and bad heroes--and build yourself.
It's 1990. Johanna Morrigan, fourteen, has shamed herself so badly on local TV that she decides that there's no point in being Johanna anymore and reinvents herself as Dolly Wilde--fast-talking, hard-drinking gothic hero and full-time Lady Sex Adventurer. She will save her poverty-stricken Bohemian family by becoming a writer--like Jo in Little Women, or the Bront s--but without the dying-young bit.
By sixteen, she's smoking cigarettes, getting drunk, and working for a music paper. She's writing pornographic letters to rock stars, having all the kinds of sex with all the kinds of men, and eviscerating bands in reviews of 600 words or less.
But what happens when Johanna realizes she's built Dolly with a fatal flaw? Is a box full of records, a wall full of posters, and a head full of paperbacks enough to build a girl after all?
Imagine The Bell Jar--written by Rizzo from Grease. How to Build a Girl is a funny, poignant, and heartbreakingly evocative story of self-discovery and invention, as only Caitlin Moran could tell it.
The number 1 Sunday Times bestseller from Caitlin Moran, bestselling author of How To Be A Woman...
Shortlisted for Specsavers National Book Awards: Specsavers Popular Fiction Book of the Year 2014.
"spirited coming of age novel romps from strength to strength...I'm a Moran fan" -- Lionel Shriver The Times "a Portnoy's Complaint for girls... when I see this book described as "laugh-out-loud funny" I feel affronted; it could make you laugh out loud with one hand tied behind its back, while wanking itself off to fantasies of Satan. Laughing out loud is just the start" -- Zoe Williams The Guardian "This isn't a sleek, slick novel, but it is a rambunctious, raw-edged, silly-profound and deeply relatable guide to what your worst mistakes can teach you, and it has much to offer teenagers both actual and inner" The Independent "Brilliantly observed, thrillingly rude and laugh-out-loud funny" -- Helen Fielding "I have so much love for Caitlin Moran" -- Lena Dunham
CAITLIN MORAN was brought up on a council estate in Wolverhampton where she was home-educated, wore a poncho and had boys throw stones at her whilst calling her 'a bummer'. She published a children's novel, The Chronicles of Narmo, at the age of 16, then became a columnist at The Times at the age of 18 which, yeah, looking back now is kind of weird. At one point she was Columnist, Interviewer and Critic of the Year - so in your face, 'bummer' boys. Her multi-award-winning bestseller How To Be a Woman was published in 25 countries, was a New York Times bestseller and won the British Book Awards Book of the Year. Her second book, Moranthology, was a Sunday Times bestseller. With her sister, she co-writes the Channel 4 sitcom Raised by Wolves. Caitlin lives on Twitter with her husband and two children, where she spends her time tweeting either about civil rights issues, or that picture of Bruce Springsteen when he was 25 and has his top off. She would like to be remembered as 'a very sexual humanitarian'.