Reading: California Girls

It’s a new month, so therefore a new self-improvement rule: Go to bed by 10pm. Then possibly read, but only actual books. Since it’s getting shit weatherwise (and also possibly otherwise) in Brussels, I am rereading my California-stack. 

Emma Cline’s The Girls is like a long, hash-induced dream (never done hash but I suppose it describes the mood well) (because California in the 70s). The book is just beautiful, and caters also for gawkers like me, who officially are totally not interested in gossip and celebrity rumours, but cannot stop staring once it’s well, there. It’s a book about Charlie Manson’s gang so you kind of know the drill, but it’s still not too obvious. Very California (I’ve never been). 

Next up is Sylvia Brownrigg’s “Pages For Her”. The cover screams faded vintage California t-shirt (which is probably why I bought it in the first place). And it’s fabulously “literary/art-elite having ambiguous bi-coastal sexual relations between Ivy League institutions, their impossibly swanky, art-filled California homes and cool New York hotels. Totally up my alley. I felt a very strong Garance Doré vibe reading this. It’s not fluff, actually not at all, and some of the descriptions of the relationships really resonated. And the California-ness is described in a very compelling way (I know I have to go there). A very nice read. As it turns out, it’s actually part of a series, as in there is a first part of the story of the protagonists called “Pages for You”. Will read it as soon as the gale-force winds and slush take over Belgium (soon).

Then, the last of this stack: Eve Babitz’s “Slow Days, Fast Company”. Hold on to your faded California vintage tees, this is fabulous in a zero fucks given -way. The ultimate gawking experience for a geeky civil servant like moi. Also doubles as the “Who’s Who” in the 60s and 70s Los Angeles. Superb, unashamed namedropping with scenes from Chateau Marmont thrown in. Kind of a lovely hybrid between Sofia Coppola, Patti Smith, a bit of style, lots of sex, drugs and the inevitable rock’n roll. 

So besides California dreamin’ there’s not much to report from here. Still haven’t bought the fabulous Cire Trudon perfume. Still having sneaky cigarettes and then regret them later. 

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