Gidget

Frederick Kohner

Published by Berkley Books, 2001
ISBN 10: 0425179621 / ISBN 13: 9780425179628
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Synopsis: A surfing, boy-crazy teenager comes of age in the summer of 1957 in this classic novel that inspired both movies and television and created an American pop culture icon.

“My English comp teacher Mr. Glicksberg says if you want to be a writer you have to—quote—sit on a window sill and get all pensive and stuff and jot down descriptions. Unquote Glicksberg! I don't know what kind of things he writes but I found my inspiration in Malibu with a radio, my best girlfriends, and absolutely zillions of boys for miles. I absolutely had to write everything down because I heard that when you get older you forget things, and I’d be the most miserable woman in the world if I forgot all about Moondoggie and what happened this summer. I absolutely owe the world my story. (And every word is true. I swear.)”

This is Franzie, part Holden Caulfield, part Lolita. The guys call her Gidget—short for girl midget. Based on the experiences of his own daughter, Frederick Kohner’s trend-setting novel became an international sensation with an irrepressible heroine whose voice still echoes every thrill, every fear, and every hope that every teenager ever had about growing up.

Includes a Foreword by Kathy Kohner Zuckerman (aka the real Gidget)

Review: If all American literature comes from Huckleberry Finn, all American surf culture comes from Gidget, the ostensible diary of Kathy Kohner, a teensy, gutsy teenage girl who crashed the all-male scene at Malibu Beach north of L.A. in 1957 and earned, from Moondoggie and others, the nickname Gidget, which meant "Girl Midget." Her father, the German immigrant screenwriter Frederick Kohner, fascinated by the beach-shack counterculture, interviewed his perky daughter at length, eavesdropped with permission on her phone calls, fictionalized her adventures, and batted out this influential bestseller. He nailed a tiny subculture's new form of speech ("If you want to know what goes on in Loveville ... Dig Number One: being gone on a boy is more important than having a boy gone on you.") and made it a pop-culture staple. Newly reissued with the real Gidget's picture on the cover (as on the original hardback), the book is very slim (appropriately enough) and historically beguiling. You'll like her--you'll really like her! --Tim Appelo

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Gidget
Publisher: Berkley Books
Publication Date: 2001
Binding: paperback
Book Condition: Fine

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