Sunday, September 25, 2011

Books I Didn't Finish: Record Collecting for Girls by Courtney E. Smith.

Total Finished: 97 out of 240 pages

So, Why Didn't You Finish It?  
But how much thought have you given to what your music choices say about you to other people?  Boys who love records (and let's face it, at some point we will al date a boy who is a little too into his records) are totally obsessing on what music you like when they meet you.  They're using it to figure out how crazy you are before they get involved (so hide your Tori Amos records).
 Record Collecting for Girls, page 97
It's not often I can pinpoint the line that makes me quit a book in disgust.

I know that it can be tough to be a girl who is into music, either as a musician or a fan. So, I was hoping that this book would be a great resource for the "music nerds" among my teen patrons.

Well, this book isn't about girls, it's about boys.  More specifically, it's about finding boys to date by pretending you 1) like the same music they like and 2) hiding that you may know more about music than they do.    This is insulting and sexist.  Other commenters have pointed out that Smith is incredibly hetero-normative and focused on white rock bands.  I also see this.

(And, just in case any girls are reading this -- any boy who won't date you because you listen to Tori Amos is not worth dating. This goes for guys too -- I married my husband dispite his love of Steely Dan.  )

To be fair, Smith knows a lot about music, and has some interesting things to say about the lack of "serious" female artists in the mainstream.  But she is incredibly dismissive of anybody who doesn't share her indie-rock tastes.  It's more than a little ironic that a woman who can claim to love the Twilight books spends half a chapter dissing "Teenage" music.

Smith's obsession with cool and making sure that you like the music that will get you laid is off-putting and boring.  I have better things to read about.

Dissenting Opinions? 
Miss A
Chicks Dig Books

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