Working in a world where a college degree qualifies her to make photocopies and color-coordinate file folders, twenty-four-year-old Girl is struggling to keep up with the essential trinity of food, shelter, and student loans. So when she finally lands the job of her dreams she ignores her misgivings and concentrates on getting the job done...whatever that may be.
Sharply observed and devastatingly funny, Citizen Girl captures with biting accuracy what it means to be young and female in the new economy. A personal glimpse into an impersonal world, Citizen Girl is edgy and heartfelt, an entertaining read that is startlingly relevant.
Read an Excerpt
The ladies' room door squeaks open and I stop breathing, jerking my feet up on the toilet seat lid in an effort to work through my lunch hour in solitude. Rubber soles scuff along the honeycomb tiles as I bend to inch the remains of my lunch out of view, but my pen betrays me, rolling brazenly out of my lap and onto the warped floor.
"Who's in here?" my boss, Doris, shouts over the din of sweatshop sewing machines whirring up the air shaft. I consider not responding -- maybe she'll think the pipes are now leaking not only asbestos but pens. "Hello-o?" She knocks once on the last stall door before rattling... see more
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Book Cover Image (jpg): Citizen Girl
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Reading Group Guide
1) Describe Girl's personality and main characteristics. What is your overall opinion of her? Her character is more fully revealed through her experiences at "My Company" and through her encounters in her social life. How does she react when she discovers the true nature of the initiative she is heading? What is behind her reluctance to speak up and what does this say about her overall character?
2) What is the significance of the character names? Girl, Guy and Buster are all generic methods of addressing individuals. What does this symbolize in the book?
3) Do you think Girl's experiences are typical of a recent college graduate? What about her perception of the working world reflects her age and/or inexperience?
4) Girl's job search leads her to "My Company." What does she find appealing about working there? How much of her desire to work there is influenced by her alternatives? Do you think it would have held the same appeal under different circumstances?
5) Feminism is a constant theme throughout the novel. Discuss how it is presented through the story, the peripheral characters, and through Girl and her encounters.
6) What are your initial impressions of Guy and Rex? What are the main aspects of their personalities? Does your perception of these characters change by the end of the novel?
7) Why does Girl feel it is important to seem complacent, even as her situation and conflict see more