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Straight Up and Dirty

3.47  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,632 Ratings  ·  258 Reviews
"I did have my own friends, my own salary, my health, and TiVo: all the important things we're likely to take for granted. Still, when it hit that I'd now have to date again, I panicked. Dating meant nightclubs, heels, and black. It meant, 'No, thank you. Really, I'm full.' It meant matching bras and underwear. Clothes with the micro used to describe them. Because until yo ...more
Hardcover, 291 pages
Published August 1st 2006 by ReganBooks (first published July 1st 2006)
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The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne FrankThe Glass Castle by Jeannette WallsI Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya AngelouEat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth GilbertPersepolis by Marjane Satrapi
Memoirs by Women
460th out of 1,743 books — 2,093 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Feb 22, 2008 Jen rated it did not like it
As an occasional visitor to Klein's blog, I picked this up thinking it would be a quick and entertaining read. WRONG. This book is so disorganized and confusing that I couldn't even finish it. It's horribly written stream-of-consciousness with no discernible structure. Klein can be funny and brutally honest, but her book is completely self-absorbed and pretentious. The thing is, Klein probably knows this, but thinks it's clever and cute (or at least marketable), whereas I do not, and didn't stic ...more
May 22, 2008 Roy rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 19, 2008 Nicole rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 05, 2009 Sherese rated it did not like it
A friend of mine was reading "Moose", Stephanie klein's second memoir when I went for a visit. The cover for Moose was interesting and I always like to read about a chubby little girls' struggle as I can relate. So, I read the insert of Moose and noticed first memoir was published called " Straight Up & Dirty". Sounded like it would be right up my alley..a brash and honest account of life and relationships, sounds good to me. Boy was I wrong.. this memoir sucked! No wonder there was no wait ...more
Apr 14, 2012 Melissa rated it it was amazing
I've avoided reading this book for years now. I got to know the author through a mutual friend, and I had such a hard time coming to terms with reading a memoir when I 'knew' the person whose life it was about. It felt wrong of me to read about her life, private and personal details she went through, and get to know her in a way that felt so removed from a conversation. I'm so glad I got over that and read her memoir. This sounds cheesy as I'm writing it, but it's given me strength when I needed ...more
Apr 04, 2009 Sara rated it it was ok
Maybe it's because I'm not a chick that's into "chick lit" but I just did not connect with this book at all. It had some funny parts, but mostly it just seemed as though the humor was forced. I'll admit I didn't even bother finishing this one, though I made a valiant effort and got most of the way through the book. Even then I will usually struggle through to the end, but it just was not worth it. If you're a straight, fufu, appletini-drinking, shopaholic, fashionista of a woman, you'll probably ...more
Chelsea G.P.
Jul 20, 2007 Chelsea G.P. rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: girlie girls
If you're a fan of Klein's blog ( then you're familiar with her off the cuff, stream of consciousness writing. With this book, she takes her writing to the next level. It's well thought out, carefully crafted and entertaining. Its chick-lit, yes, but without the pretentious air of Candace Bushnell. She bears all, but with her own personality - which comes across as someone who might be a friend.
Jan 18, 2016 Lyv rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anybody going through a difficult break up
At first, I really didn't like this book.
I wanted to close it after the first few pages, because Stephanie was so unclassy, and arrogant. Always cynical and bitter. I really didn't like it.
But then it got better, way better...

Stephanie just got divorced, and she talks about how she went through it and how she tried to get up on her feet after that.
The beginning of the book is about her multiple dates, just following the divorce.
This wasn't my favourite part- even though there were some fun mo
Feb 06, 2011 Kourtney rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: NO ONE!
Recommended to Kourtney by: Someone who must hate me
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 03, 2008 Angeld01 rated it liked it
I saw Stefanie Klein and the Printers Row Book Fair last month and I really liked her. I have since begun reading her blog.

I enjoyed this book. Yes, it was a little slow - but her exploration of life as a divorcee at 28 was well thought out. I hear some reviews say she referred to her ex-husband too much - but I liked that. I got a stronger sense of her, and definitely what she was overcoming by her stories of her marriage. Also, I always find myself interested by divorce, in that, what drives y
Feb 09, 2011 Mallory rated it liked it
Klein is like that friend you have who lets it all hang out - sometimes inappropriate and always hilariously funny. This is chick lit, but to the next degree... Chick-tion, perhaps? It's smart, witty and absolutely adorable. It can also be heartbreakingly real and gut-wrenchingly sad. This is a must-read for any single girl who half-wondered if she'd ever find love, but didn't care terribly much if she did or she didn't. Imagine Woody Allen with red hair and a vagina, and you have Stephanie Klei ...more
Tara D-K
Jul 15, 2008 Tara D-K rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. For me, it was so relatable on all levels. It was like Sex and the City but better- Stephanie and her friends could have been my friends and I...and her story of the Wasband was a story like my own. It was gut-wrenching at times and you couldn't help but feel for her immensely. It was a very couragous story to put out there since it IS a memoir. I don't know that I could do the same and I'm a very open person. I've never recommended a book more than I have this one.
Katherine Friedl
Sep 06, 2013 Katherine Friedl rated it did not like it
Let me start by saying I adored Moose, Klein's memoir about fat camp. It was an honest coming of age story that left me laughing out loud. I thought I would like Straight up and Dirty but after 3 attempts to read it, I could not get past page 100. I saw the spoiled little girl in Moose grew into a superficial brat. She was so picky, rude, and judgmental that I could not get into it.
Aug 21, 2007 Meredith rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: chicklit lovers who enjoy memoirs
Words cannot say how much I enjoyed reading this book. It's your typical chicklit in memoir style. My two favorite combinations. I found Stephanie extremely likable and would really recommend anyone looking for a great chicklit memoir. She is also coming out with another memoir about her experience at fat camp. I think its called Moose. Cannot wait for that either.
May 26, 2009 Heather rated it it was ok
I can't help but compare this book to Eat, Pray Love.... as both are about a divorce and crisis of self. Unfortunately, there is no comparison. I never felt a connection to the author or any personal thread to her struggle. She often comes off shallow... or like she is trying to hard to be her NY self.
Ket Lamb
Oct 10, 2015 Ket Lamb rated it really liked it
Straight Up and Dirty is straight up hilarious. Going through a bad break-up? Devour this amusing memoir if you don't want to make the same mistake twice. Blogger Stephanie Klein lets it all hang out after her "wasband" divorces her, and she dives back into the crazy New York City dating pool. Any woman whose been single in a big city can relate to this witty page-turner. If only Klein had read between the lines when she strong-armed her husband into committing. Forcing someone to marry you is n ...more
Mar 16, 2009 jennifer rated it did not like it
it's possible to write a memoir without being totally self-absorbed. yes, it's about you but it doesn't have to be so ABOUT YOU.

bored with the self-love, I gave up about thirty pages in.
May 05, 2008 Mora rated it liked it
eh. so so. a young divorcee trying to find herself and break away from being a serial dater. She's sort of to fancy smancy in the NCY scene. I can't deal with gucci.
Jun 03, 2011 Rebecca rated it liked it
Shelves: chicklit
I liked this book. It was like SEX AND THE CITY, but real life and not as over blown and dramatic, because seriously, when is real life overblown and dramatic all the time, even for New York,

Stephanie (Yay! I remembered a name!) is newly divorced and she talks about her ex and the relationship they had. When she talks about all the shit that happened before they even got married, I keep thinking to myself, couldn't she see this is going to end up a disaster? But she never once mentioned that she
Jul 04, 2010 Mari rated it liked it
I read Stephanie Klein's Moose: A Memoir of Fat Camp a while back, and liked it. I've read her blog for at least that long, although I never delved into the archives to get the full story this book, her first, covers.

It was a little weird knowing what her kids look like and knowing her husband's real name (he comes in at the end of this book, albeit with a pseudonym, like everyone in the book). It did make reading it a little less suspenseful, knowing that she gets her happy ending (and is stil
Mar 07, 2008 Ellen rated it liked it
Stephanie Klein, I admire your nerve.

There's something to be said for this particular sub-genre of memoir--let's call it Furious Jottings of a Woman Scorned (or FJWS)--and Klein is hardly alone in her need to spew such venom (See 'The Five Men Who Broke My Heart' by Susan Shapiro). I marvel at the way memorists are able to recklessly burn bridges (name changes notwithstanding), expose ugly truths, then venture back into their social galaxy. What are the effects?

This book comes off as a series
May 29, 2009 Marci rated it it was ok
Shelves: book-club
For my book club I'm going to write a real review of this book. I found this book to be much too wordy, chocked full of cliché’s, overly dramatic and fun to read. There were passages when I was just hoping she would get on with it but there were others where I was laughing out loud. I am a firm believer in the editor's pen and I feel it was lacking here but I still give the book a three.

I would re-label this book as a self help piece. I think it speaks to women who are in verbally and even phys
Cindy Lofgren
Dec 31, 2015 Cindy Lofgren rated it liked it
Shelves: humor
I was about 3 chapters in and I laid the book down. I just couldn't go any further. I went and read some reviews to see if it was just me that thought her writing was like listeing to someone with severe ADHD. Many sentences were incoherent and she would be talking about something unrelated to topic or about something or someone that has never been mentioned before. I was like, "what the f*#@?". Other reviews said it gets better, IF you don't abandon the book by the middle, so I gave it a go and ...more
Sherri Hunter
Feb 27, 2010 Sherri Hunter rated it it was amazing
Shelves: memoir-biography
In one word, WOW! This book provided many hours of great entertainment. The author's accounting of her own experiences of life after divorce and picking up the pieces go straight to the heart of the matter. Anyone going through or having gone through divorce can identify with and relate to most everything the author describes. Readers who haven't gone through the horror of a divorce should read it just to see why the rest of us act the way we do.

All kidding around aside, this book is in your fa
Nov 09, 2008 Jennifer rated it really liked it
I have a love for cute covers and this really took the cake. The woman is Stephanie Klein, and this is her memoir about being back on the market after an ugly divorce in NYC. She's sassy, beautiful, but emotional- which can be a little much. I imagined that she lived the life I COULD HAVE...if I had made different choices and if I happened to be a rich, gorgeous redhead in NYC, but ya know. The cover consists of different photographs that she had taken of herself along with others fun nature sho ...more
Cheryl  Madigan
Nov 13, 2010 Cheryl Madigan rated it did not like it
Shelves: non-fiction
This book seemed to have some good reviews on this site, so I ordered it up through the library. It did nothing for me, and I forced myself to finish it, but it was somewhat painful. If I knew it had such a "sex and the city" vibe, I would have skipped it completely.
Most of my issue was that I just did not like the writer as a person. The storyline is totally one dimensional- remembering her failed marriage, and her quest for true love that would last forever. I suppose this was intentional, I
May 19, 2015 Jennifer rated it did not like it
I applaud anyone who can finish a book let alone get it published but this was a hot mess. Either Ms. Klein is a dreadful writer or her editor did her no favors. Maybe I'm of an age that I expect angst to be coherent - otherwise why bother to try to convey it?
Andrea Amadio
Nov 02, 2014 Andrea Amadio rated it it was amazing
I found this book in a vintage library and can I say something? It is, in its genre, a diamond. It's like a more serious and deep version of sex and the city, hilarious in some ways. In some points I found myself stop reading and think and say out loud I AM THIS GIRL, MATE! to my poor flatmate. It's Really beautiful and heart warming. Ultra suggested.
Jul 05, 2015 Rebecca rated it did not like it
Stephanie Klein was a chubby kid. She lost weight, married her dream guy, and lived in Manhattan. Somewhere down the line he cheats on her while she is pregnant, so she decided to dispose of his baby via an abortion. Not fucked up enough for you? They divorce and she immediately moves on to the club scene in a desperate attempt to find the next man to fill her up. It's really just the pathetic and sad story of a girl with zero self esteem. No matter how thin she might be now, that chubby girl is ...more
Aug 05, 2009 Caroline rated it it was amazing
Dear SteFUNNY Klein, if you're out there in the mommysphere... i just finished Straight Up, and i'm not ashamed to say, it like, changed my life. I love reading memoirs that have such a strong voice, its something you cant make up nor fake. I mean, I certainly cant relate to a chaste, sober and mongamous saint who is always hygenically and mentally sound. However, screaming Carly Simon until my voice is gone, challenging myself to a drink-off to ensure "social lubrication" aka liquid courage, an ...more
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A foodie who sometimes abuses hair care products, Stephanie Klein is an acclaimed writer and photographer with a cult-like following. Her work has been published internationally, and her blog, Greek Tragedy, was recently ranked the 26th most powerful blog in the world by The Observer in the UK. Klein's photography is on permanent exhibit in New York's Hotel Gansevoort. Her first memoir, Straight U ...more
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