Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Derby Girl, by Shauna Cross

(hb; 2007: YA novel)

From the inside flap:

"Meet Bliss Cavendar, an indie-rock-loving misfit stuck in the tiny town of Bodeen, Texasd. Her paegant-addicted mother expects her to compete for the coveted Miss Bluebonnet crown, but Bliss wold rather feast on roaches than be subjected to such rhinestone tyranny.

"Bliss's escape? Roller Derby.

"When she discovers a league in nearby Austin, Bliss embarks on an epic journey full of hilarious tattooed girls, delicious boys in bands, and a few not-so-awesome realities even the most bad-assed derby chick has to learn."

Review:

Emotionally honest and charming first-person-narrative work. It's short, with a story that moves along at a swift, focused clip; just as important, Derby Girl is a realistic work, staying adolescent true in its balancing of teenage angst/hormonal surges and self-absorption/search for identity confusion -- it's not a rosy-eyed remembrance of being young(er), nor is it too gushy, like some teenage-voiced novels are.

This is good read that became an excellent movie, retitled Whip It. (I saw an advance screening of the movie last weekend.)

#

Whip It is scheduled to grace stateside theater screens on October 2, 2009.

Drew Barrymore, who directed the film, plays Smashley Simpson. Ellen Page plays Bliss Cavendar. Alia Shawkat plays Pash. Marcia Gay Harden plays Brooke Cavendar. Daniel Stern plays Earl Cavendar. Eulala Scheel plays Shania Cavendar. Kristen Wiig plays Maggie Mayhem. Jimmy Fallon plays "Hot Tub" Johnny Rocket. Juliette Lewis plays Iron Maven. Zoe Bell plays Bloody Holly. Andrew Wilson plays Razor. Eve plays Rosa Sparks. Landon Pigg plays Oliver.

The film was scripted by novel author Shauna Cross.

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