Girls in Trucks
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Girls in Trucks

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2.84 of 5 stars 2.84  ·  rating details  ·  6,267 ratings  ·  1,191 reviews
Sarah Walters is a less-than-perfect debutante. She tries hard to follow the time-honored customs of the Charleston Camellia Society, as her mother and grandmother did, standing up straight in cotillion class and attending lectures about all the things that Camellias don't do. (Like ride with boys in pickup trucks).
But Sarah can't quite ignore the barbarism just beneath al...more
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Published April 7th 2008 by Hachette Audio
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Lisa
There's a wonderful passage in Anne Lamott's "Bird by Bird" in which Anne sends a manuscript off to an editor, who rejects it with this withering rejoinder: "You have made the mistake of thinking that everything that has happened to you is interesting."

That pretty much sums this one up.
Anne
This one falls into the "Don't Judge a Book by its Cover" category - I thought the cover art and title were very promising. Even the subject matter appealed to me - the story of a debutante growing up in South Carolina and her relationships with her fellow society girls and their quest to find suitable husbands. Of course, I expected it to be light, but mostly it was just disappointing. There were glimmers of humor and good writing - but many of the issues were dead-ends. The main character, Sar...more
Imogen
Look, the only reason I don't have a bunch of Kathy Acker tattoos is that I'm broke, and that's also the only reason I don't collect Dennis Cooper first editions. The only two reasons I don't talk about liking Chuck Palahniuk are the anti-intellectual implications of joining The Cult and the fact that, often, his books are stupid. I also prefer novels about zombie apocalypses to books about most other things.

I still think Melissa Bank should be canonized. She is a goddam GENIUS and I think that...more
Tracy
Waste of an afternoon. I really wanted to like this book, and I did in the beginning. The author just left way too much hanging. She goes into detail, getting you involved with characters, and then never mentions them again. Poorly written, with a horrible ending. Totally unbelievable ending. Wierd.
Jennifer
*SO* disappointing. I was really, really, looking forward to reading this book. The level of disconnect between the book summary and the actual plot is so huge that I'm tempted to believe that someone just made up the summary based on a third-hand description of the book. When a book is billed as being having "more gasps, sobs, laughs, and surprises in [its] pages than in most people's entire bookshelves", then I expect it to deliver! Instead, I got depressing tripe.

The plot is poorly constructe...more
fleegan
The back cover lies about how funny it is. But humor isn't everything, and I could've over looked it's unhumorousness if I could've at LEAST liked the main character, Sarah. She was pathetic, and then, when she gets older and knows that she's pathetic and remains pathetic? Well, I don't like that.

Plus I didn't like how these important things would happen in the book, for example, her sister goes off to college and is going to marry some guy from Madagascar who is kind of abusive and then, you n...more
Erin
Aug 04, 2008 Erin rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: nobody
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Betsy
This past Sunday's SF Chronicle review did a very good job of summing up some of my qualms as well as some of the better parts of this book. The fact that the narrative voice changes part way through from 1st to 3rd to 2nd person is jarring. Parts of the novel felt like a cluster of connected short stories. As the SF Chron reviewer aptly pointed out, the story about Annie and her boyfriend and the dog was the best writing in the book. I kept reading because I still wanted to know what would happ...more
Deb
The beautiful cover pulled me into this one which started out pretty well. Sarah Walters is raised to be a debutante and a member of the Camellia Society. She's pretty likeable until she goes off to college. Things change for her ALOT then and into the future. Indiscriminate sex, bondage, a drug addicted friend, single motherhood due to a practically unknown father, and a mother coming out of the closet all are issues almost gratuitously thrown into the plot. It was a quick read, though. I read...more
Molly
I liked this book for all of its southern references; the author is from charleston and was really good at picking up tiny details that seemed very southern, and very accurate to me. there were definitely a couple of sentences or ideas where I was like, 'yeah!'. but the story was depressing, and disjointed. Each chapter was from different (usually chronological) periods of the protagonist's life, from preteens to early thirties, but sometimes they left off where I wished she would have continued...more
Pam
I thought this book was highly over rated and poorly written. Not at all what I expected it to be. There were moments when the author's humor shone through and those sections were good; however, the book never really went anywhere.
Lisa
I can't decide whether to give this two stars or three. I enjoyed the book, but have several issues with it. The narrating style was inconsistent and kept changing. Chapters skipped around in time, which was confusing, and important events weren't always explained. The main character -- Sarah Walters -- wasn't entirely likeable. I kept waiting for her to grow up. And the end was kind of ruined by a huge dose of Sarah's cynicism - you'll have to read it to see what I mean!
rachel
Girls in Trucks, to my great disappointment after seeing it called "chick lit with a bite" elsewhere on the internets, is very Writer's Workshop-y. I would pay homage to Southern placation and say "not that that's a bad thing!" but judging by this book's cumulative Goodreads score of 2.83, it's...not good.

The book's narrator is Sarah Walters, a debutante from modern South Carolina, trying to negotiate her life in and out of the South even though her social league and fake Southern gentility don'...more
Bob Redmond
Well-crafted novel narrated by an ex-debutante from South Carolina. It's not quite coming-of-age, because the story arcs the narrator into her 30's--although that fact itself demonstrates lots about the story: the narrator never really achieves a self-definition except after 20 years, and then by default rather than bold choices. To the extent that the character is similarly, passively developed, this novel fails. On the other hand, perhaps it is a statement about the generation, the south, or s...more
Lauren
Despite the misleading summary on its back cover, Girls in Trucks is a collection of chapters surrounding Sarah Walters, her friends, and her family as they fail at romance. From her public sexual assault as a child by her evil cousin to her stalking of her abusive ex-boyfriend years after they broke up, Sarah’s experiences are simultaneously horrific and uninteresting. The men in Sarah, her sister, and her friends’ lives are boring, weird, and mean. The only thing worse than these men is readin...more
Sarav
Let me first say that I am not a "literary reader." I think that I would have enjoyed this book more, if I was.
For me, this book is the epitome of "don't judge a book by its cover."
I was so disappointed. The cover is gorgeous! The photo spoke to me of a heroine who was not going to suffer fools gladly. I also love trucks and thought she would be tough and tomboyish and fun. She was none of these things. The author describes her (in the interview in the back) as "brave." To me, she was painfully...more
Lynda
Girls in Trucks by Katie Crouch is not typical "chick lit." If you are looking for a feel-good, it's all about sisterhood, I'm kissing frogs until I meet my prince and then I'm going to squeeze out two perfect mini-mrs and mini-mr, put this book down and keep looking. Crouch's main character, Sarah Walters does not have a perfect life, perfect friends or perfect family. She makes mistakes, many mistakes. She fumbles in her love life and her professional life. The novel leads us on a journey with...more
Toni
I don't usually bother taking issue with negative comments that others have made about books that I've enjoyed because the way I feel about books is the way I feel about people: I have my opinion of them and others have theirs, and it's not going to help to argue if we don't agree.

That being said, I think Katie Crouch is taking some undeserved criticism from readers who seem to have failed to remember that old chesnut: "Don't judge a book by its cover." I was flabbergasted to read the number of...more
Carrie
Jul 08, 2008 Carrie rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: chick lit lovers
Girls in Trucks follows Sarah as she grows up in the Southern debutante life. The South Carolina women in her family have all been part of the Camellia Society, and hold fast to the expectations and traditions involved with being a Camellia. Sarah and her girlfriends attend the classes they are supposed to, and dress as they are expected, but some of them can't help but be attracted to the things Camellias aren't supposed to do, like ride in trucks with boys who would never marry a Camellia. The...more
Kathy
Although the original premise sounded promising, I found the book to be disappointing. The main character seems to be whiny throughout, with no backbone or actual desire to improve her life. Although this is hyped as a tale of a debutante "rebelling" against old-fashioned ideas, the main character actually illustrates a woman that believes you must find love (e.g., find a man) and when you are unhappy you simply drop out and drink/drug yourself up. Never mind that some actual gumption might make...more
Jessica
One word... weird. Unfortunately for me, I'm one to judge a book by it's cover. I saw this and read the quick description on the jacket and thought it would be a cute Southern novel. Well, I was wrong. I ended up finishing it, but was hard pressed to really like it. The writing was just odd and I'm still wondering why the author included a few of the stories that she did.
nicole
debutantes in bad relationships. so boring. plus, some really annoying devices like a middle chapter in which the main character is written about entirely as "the girl" and random paragraph where the author addresses the reader directly. but just in that one paragraph, at least in what i read of this.
Bridgit
I'm way too old to read books about women who keep falling into toxic relationships. Plus the writing did nothing for me. At all. Ugh. I hope I have not permanently insulted whoever it was that gave me this book. :)
Mateja
3.0 - 3.5 stars

The story aside, this was a very unique book, at least unlike anything I've ever read before. It has a very eclectic writing style. Some chapters read like a "how to" manual, some are written in second person as in "you will..." and it gives the feel of someone reading what the future holds for you, while other chapters are written in a "normal", regular narrative. I enjoyed this very much.

And the book itself isn't just one main storyline and a couple of smaller, less important o...more
Marcia
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nely
Sarah Walters is definitely not perfect. Although she was brought up under the influence of the Charleston Camellia Society - she is surely not the debutante that her mother hoped she would turn out to be.

Shortly after graduation she heads to a university up north and eventually makes her way to New York City - or, as far away from the South as possible. From there we are strung along through her relationships, career (or lack thereof), and friendships.

I can’t help it - I love books about dysfun...more
Jen A.
When our local bookstore closed, unable to compete with Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Borders, I picked up this book for half off. I liked the cover (and later, I liked the fact that the author included a few pages at the end of the book, describing how the cover image came to be), and the quote on the front (by USA Today) read, "Charming... A fresh, effervescent story... A memorable tale of good girls and bad choices."

Goodreads reader reviews have been harsh, in my opinion. Crouch's novel does...more
Kate
What a waste of a gorgeous cover and promising premise -- when good girls from the South make bad choices. Instead, this book felt like a litany of bad choices on the part of the author -- the worst of which is Sarah Walters, her highly unlikable leading lady who becomes more tedious and whiny throughout the course of the book. In many ways, it felt like the author had grand designs for her first novel (in her end notes, she compares herself to Flaubert) that fell terribly short. The book is fil...more
Mrs. Reed
I liked the format of Girls in Trucks. It was told in related short stories, which I think really worked. i like how it went in-depth to a few important moments, but didn't try to follow every single moment. We were able to see the main character's life very clearly by looking at these few snapshots.

The characters didn't really like themselves or each other, and I could see why because I didn't really like them, either. I'm glad that Crouch started with the story about them being young girls for...more
Danny
I read all of Girls in Trucks by Katie Crouch today. I began it while waiting for my mom and sister to get here, and finished it after they left. I am not an especially quick reader, so this should tell you that the book is either a quick read, or thoroughly compelling. Maybe a little of both?

Most succinctly, it was a book that made me feel like a teenager.

The protagonist, Sarah Walters, is an imperfect person for whom things do not ever seem to go right. She's rebelling against her cotillion-...more
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my review 2 59 Feb 19, 2012 08:29AM  
Book Review 1 20 Feb 07, 2009 02:07PM  
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1029349
I write every single day, first by hand and and then typing on my battered Mac. I've been writing all my life, though I didn't really get going on books until I was 29. I had to get fired from a few jobs first.

I received my MFA from Columbia University, and have won fellowships to the MacDowell Colony and the Sewanee Writers Conference. My three year old also recently awarded me the Macaroni Priz...more
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“Without a bellyful of liquor, all I am is a woman who cracks stupid jokes to make up for being shy.” 17 likes
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