Date and Time
May 31, 2020 6:00 pm
Join us on Zoom for Anna Dorn’s D.C. launch of her debut novel VAGABLONDE.
Dorn will be in conversation with Laela Shallal followed by a Q&A with the audience.
Click here to pre-purchase the book! Delivery and pick-up are available.
Kirkus Reviews captures the intoxicating essence of D.C. native Dorn’s narrative best:
In Dorn’s pulse-quickening debut novel, an LA lawyer–turned-rapper finds herself thrust into the spotlight and its attendant chaos.
“I’m a Virgo so I don’t take perfection lightly,” exclaims 30-year-old Prue Van Teesen, the misguided heroine of Dorn’s story. Living in Los Angeles—a sun-bleached land of egos, fame, and vanity—doesn’t make things easier. In pursuit of a more meaningful life, Prue decides to quit her antidepressants cold turkey, take a pause from her law profession, and instead focus on what matters: turning her talent for spitting lyrics into a rap career and “thriving.”
When Prue’s girlfriend introduces her to music producer Jax Jameson, a human disco ball of manic talent and cocaine-fueled good times, they instantly “vibe,” and she’s soon enmeshed in his “Kingdom” of so-called creatives. During what feels like a fever dream of Adderall and various uppers, Prue records her first song under the stage name Vagablonde, starts a rap group called Shiny AF, and makes a number of ethically dubious decisions—like letting one of her law clients join the never-ending party. As Shiny AF catapults to stardom, Prue spins out of control, losing not just her girlfriend in the process, but herself as well.
A tumultuous ride of emotional highs and lows (do yourself a favor and don’t read this in one sitting), Dorn’s narrative is intoxicating, particularly in its depiction of the existential ennui that’s stemmed from our insatiable consumer culture. In a music scene where self-commodification and virality reign, Prue’s validation no longer comes from her peers, but instead from her growing internet presence. Every morning she repeatedly refreshes her Twitter homepage, each time to more followers, feeling less in touch with the world the higher she rises. Dorn may have written the horror novel we deserve.
Publishers Weekly said:
“Dorn’s voice slices like a serrated knife through a wacked-out world of contemporary music culture, where glittery dreams go viral and die.”
Anna Dorn is a writer and lawyer based in Los Angeles, and her novel Vagablonde is part satire, part cautionary tale set in LA’s contemporary music scene. Dorn is a writer living in Los Angeles. A former criminal defense attorney, she regularly writes about legal issues for Justia and Medium. Her article on juvenile life without parole was published in American University Law Review. She has written about culture for LA Review of Books, The Hairpin, and Vice Magazine. Anna has a JD from UC Berkeley Law School, an MFA from Antioch University-Los Angeles, and a BA from UNC-Chapel Hill. She attended the Maret School in Washington, D.C. See you on Zoom!