Overview

Clown Girl lives in Baloneytown, a seedy neighborhood where drugs, balloon animals, and even rubber chickens contribute to the local currency. Against a backdrop of petty crime, she struggles to live her dreams, calling on cultural masters Charlie Chaplin, Kafka, and da Vinci for inspiration. In an effort to support herself and her layabout performance-artist boyfriend, Clown Girl finds herself unwittingly transformed into a "corporate clown," trapping herself in a cycle of meaningless, high-paid gigs that veer ...
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Clown Girl

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Overview

Clown Girl lives in Baloneytown, a seedy neighborhood where drugs, balloon animals, and even rubber chickens contribute to the local currency. Against a backdrop of petty crime, she struggles to live her dreams, calling on cultural masters Charlie Chaplin, Kafka, and da Vinci for inspiration. In an effort to support herself and her layabout performance-artist boyfriend, Clown Girl finds herself unwittingly transformed into a "corporate clown," trapping herself in a cycle of meaningless, high-paid gigs that veer dangerously close to prostitution. Monica Drake has created a novel that riffs on the high comedy of early film stars — most notably Chaplin and W. C. Fields — to raise questions of class, gender, economics, and prejudice. Resisting easy classification, this debut novel blends the bizarre, the humorous, and the gritty with stunning skill.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
As Drake's debut opens, Nita, otherwise known as Sniffles the Clown, is tying balloon animals for a horde of greedy, sticky children at a fair. Suffering what may be a cardiac event, she's rushed to the hospital-after trying to get help from a clown fetishist, who simply drops his phone number on top of her prone form. Welcome to wacky, stressful Baloneytown, where clown prostitution, stoned dogs and fire juggling-cum-arson are the norm. Nita struggles to make enough money clowning to keep herself in oversized shoes and squirting daisies, while also saving for Clown College tuition for her boyfriend, handsome clown Rex Galore. But Rex is mostly MIA, and Nita's longing for him settles on local cop Jerrod. While not much happens, the pace of the narrative is methamphetamine-frantic, as Drake drills down past the face paint and into Nita's core, often using Nita's relations with men as the bit. Nita emerges as a fully-realized character, bearing witness to a lot of the emotionally ridiculous and just a hint of the sublime. Some plot threads never quite come together, and a few characters are underdeveloped, but there is a lot more going on here than just clowning around. (Feb.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780979018886
  • Publisher: Hawthorne Books & Literary Arts, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 8/24/2010
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 580,502
  • File size: 885 KB

Meet the Author

Monica Drake has an MFA from the University of Arizona and teaches at the
Pacific NW College of Art. She is a contributor of reviews and articles to
The Oregonian, The Stranger, and the Portland Mercury and her fiction has
appeared in the Beloit Fiction Review, Threepenny Review, The Insomniac
Reader, and others. She has been the recipient of an Arizona Commission on
the Arts Award, the Alligator Juniper Prize in Fiction, and a Millay Colony
Fellowship, and was a Tennessee Williams scholar at Sewanee Writers
Workshop.

Charles Michael "Chuck" Palahniuk lives in Portland, Oregon. He writes satirical fiction and is best known for his award-winning novel Fight Club, which was later made into a film directed by David Fincher. His Internet following is extraordinary, mainly due to his website. Other works include: Choke, Invisible Monsters, Lullaby, and Haunted.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 24 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(12)

4 Star

(5)

3 Star

(3)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(2)

Your Rating:

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 24 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 30, 2009

    A bit depressing.

    I found the synopsis on the bookflap to be somewhat misleading, as the author barely touched upon plot points that the synopsis made out to be major events in the book. I often felt like I was intruding on the main character during the more awkward moments in the book. While this signifies good writing, I did not find it amusing or entertaining. The story would have the potential to be more enjoyable if it were revisited and some of the characters were developed more fully.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 23, 2008

    Meh

    I thought this book was well written, however, while I appreciated the writing I felt that it does not relate to men well. I think it is a book written by a woman for women. I would suggest men read something else but ladies will enjoy it immensely.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 25, 2007

    A reviewer

    I admit, I was lured in by Chuck Palahniuk writing 'Clown Girl''s introduction. However, Drake's 'Clown Girl' stands on its own. Tedious in some areas, delightfully witty in most, 'Clown Girl' is worth it, with or without Chuck's ordainment. I guessed the ending within the first few chapters, but I still experienced that cathartic release in the final chapter. Read & enjoy.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 29, 2007

    excellent

    I honestly dont know how one could not fall in love with Nita, Rex and Mr. Cinnamon Buns. A must for an fan of Palahniuk.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 6, 2007

    Deeper than a Red Rubber Nose

    Reader beware: this novel is no corporate hooker gig, this is the real deal. Every single detail- from making a ballon jesus, to a rubber chicken baby, to high-powered moves on the billiard table- will seem as real as if you were there yourself. The writing is outstanding, the story is absorbing, and the characters are multi-layered. Drake has given us a novel worthy of a standing ovation.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 13, 2013

    Funny and clever

    When i bought this book i was unable to put it down. You really start to feel for poor Nita and her struggles. Beautifully written. It was funny and quirky and i was very pleased with the ending.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 26, 2012

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  • Posted February 24, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Fascinating. . .

    I thought this book was very entertaining. It is highly creative and well written. Monica Drake definitely has a real talent, Clown Girl is evidence of her abilities. I am looking forward to her next book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 14, 2008

    I Hated It

    In my opinion, this was a stupid book. Seriously, a very DUMB book. I had to make myself finish it, hoping that the ending would be great. It wasn't. Don't waste your money on this book.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 22, 2007

    Clown Girl Worst Ever

    Worst book ever. Avoid. Avoid. Avoid. Don't even think about wasting your money. Baloneytown was the best name she could come up with? This book has a plot? Okay, where is it. Save the money and just read your grocery list. It's a better read.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 9, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 7, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 26, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 24, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 23, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 5, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 11, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 13, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 10, 2010

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    Posted May 27, 2009

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 24 Customer Reviews

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