If you’ve ventured onto the internet in the past two days, chances are you’re aware that a certain diminutive reality star has written a book. That’s right: Today, Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi’s highly-anticipated first novel, A Shore Thing, was finally released. (The book’s a “collaboration” between Snooki and writer Valerie Frankel, who has also co-written a book with Joan Rivers.)
And you know what? It’s not bad!
I know — I was shocked too. Sure, A Shore Thing has plenty of crass moments; there is, for example, one memorable scene that includes a laxative-laced drink and another in which our heroine’s gallant Guido boyfriend pees on her after she’s stung by a jellyfish. But on the whole, the novel is a fun, light read that has enough goofy charm to win over even avowed Jersey Shore haters. (Kind of like Snooki herself.)
To give you a better idea of what the SnookBook’s all about, here’s a rundown of the most and least surprising things about A Shore Thing. Spoilers follow, so stop here if you actually plan on reading the thing:
1. The novel’s protagonist, Giovanna “Gia” Spumanti, is a five-foot-tall, pickle-loving party girl who wants to have “the sexiest summer ever” before finding “a sweet, romantic gorilla juicehead to marry.” The pouf is her signature ‘do. When she doesn’t get her way, she screws up her face and cries, “Waa!” She considers working at a tanning salon her dream job (and “do not get her started” on the new 10 percent tan tax). She makes observations like this one: “They were huddled together like a family of Ellis Island immigrants just off the Mayflower.” In other words, “Gia” should really be spelled “S-N-O-O-K-I.”
2. Much of the action takes place at three major locations: Karma, “the biggest and best club in Seaside Heights,” a gym, and a tanning salon called Tantastic. Laundry is mentioned but not dwelled upon.
3. Characters tend to have goofy nicknames. Rich guy Benjamin Newberry tells girls to call him “Bender.” Gia dubs a gorilla she goes out with “The Hulk.” And then there’s Gia’s cousin Bella’s love interest, Tony Troublino. His nickname? “Trouble,” of course.
4. The villains are two skinny witches-with-a-B who are jealous of Gia’s allure. Neither one of them has an Italian name, which is how you know they’re eeeeevil.
1. Bella, the story’s second main character, is more of a Sammi Sweetheart type than a JWoww — even though Jenni Farley is Snooki’s real-life BFF. Gia’s cousin is a reserved, beautiful athlete (Sammi played soccer) who has just broken up with her long-term boyfriend at the beginning of the story; if Snooks had chosen to immortalize her best pal in print, by contrast, she would have made Bella a loudmouthed maneater with fake boobs. Well, actually, Bella does have fake boobs: “They were Bella’s birthday gift to herself when she turned twenty-one a few months ago. She’d waited her whole life for t–s to grow and finally gave up on Mother Nature and turned to Dr. Rosenberg.”
2. The girls of Jersey Shore have made it clear that when they’re on the prowl for men, the more muscles a guy has, the better. But according to A Shore Thing, gorillas can actually be too jacked for their own good. At one point, Gia goes on a date with a juicehead named Johnny and reaches into his pants only to find “a couple of marbles in a tea bag and a mushy worm.” See, guys: Steroids do bad things below the belt. Who would have thought there’d be an anti-performance enhancer PSA in a book by a Jersey cast member?
3. Snooki may be more aware of her own shortcomings than anyone gives her credit for. Two-thirds of the way through the book, Bella and Gia get into an explosive fight in which Bella slams her cousin for being irresponsible and childish: “You have to carry your own friggin’ weight in life, Gia. You can’t expect your mom, or your dad, or me, or your next boyfriend, to take care of you. Man up, Gia! You’re twenty-one years old.” Maybe this is Snooki’s — Nicole’s — way of indicating that she’s about to enter a new, more mature phase? (Okay, probably not.)
4. In the end, both Bella and Gia realize that they don’t need men to complete them — which is a refreshing plot point for any contemporary work of fiction, let alone a silly book engineered to cash in on the Jersey craze.
Tell me, Shelf Lifers — has any of this intrigued you enough to make you want to pick up your own copy of A Shore Thing? Or are you content to just scan silly excerpts of the SnookBook as they surface on the Web, then go back to forgetting Nicole Polizzi ever got published?