Friday, December 18, 2009

Non-Fiction: Tales from the Prom

Tales from the Prom (Elissa Stein & Daniel Mailliard, St. Martin’s Griffen, 1998)
A great idea done moderately well. Described as a selection of "the most heartbreaking, hysterical, pathetic and true prom stories ever," the book does indeed contain such a collection, and they are indeed wonderfully, embarrassingly entertaining. Regrettably, rather than concentrate on such stories, the authors pad out the relatively slim volume—actually, considering the price and type size, the very slim volume—with unnecessary and unentertaining passages containing such things as condensed synopsises of Prom related movies, pointless reinterpretations of old Prom themes and unfunny comments about Prom fashions of the past and present. Had they simply included more true stories, the book would be much, much better, not to mention much more entertaining. Prom stories—like first date stories, first sex stories and first drunk and/or drug stories—are usually so awkward and mortifying that they need no assistance to keep the reader interested.

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