L.A. Candy, Lauren Conrad’s first novel, is a book that raises all sorts of important questions. For example, what exactly is “just the right amount of sexy stubble”? What qualifies as “off-the-charts SAT scores”? What is the appropriate attire to wear with a microphone?
In the proud tradition of Jack Kerouac, James Joyce, and Philip Roth, Conrad’s first novel is semiautobiographical: The story follows Jane Roberts as she moves to L.A. to fulfill her dream of becoming an “events planner,” and on the way gets cast as the star of a reality series.
Those looking for a true roman à clef, however, may be somewhat disappointed. While there are clearly some analogs that a seasoned viewer of The Hills cannot miss (“Jesse Edwards”=Brody Jenner, “Hannah”=Whitney, “Fiona Chen”=Lisa Love/Kelly Cutrone) there are no real Heidi or Spencer counterparts and the book isn’t really a thinly veiled tell-all of the “juicy secrets” behind the show.
The most revealing section of the book in that respect may be the Acknowledgments page where, in addition to thanking her “collaborator” Nancy Ohlin, Conrad thanks her “best friends”: Maura, Lo, Jillian, Natania and Britton….Now, I know Lo, but who the hell are those other four?! Eighty percent of Lauren’s BEST FRIENDS are people who I’ve never seen on TV before? Continue reading