I found Gothic Charm School by Jillian Venters (Harper Collins) to be an easy but enjoyable read overall. Her main messages is be yourself, expressing your gothiness, while being polite and courteous. The book seems to be mainly aimed at those new to the scene. I think it is worth a read though, even for more seasoned members.
There are sections on why it is a good idea to cultivate your manners, how to explain yourself to others, advice for babybats (love this term), advice on how to behave when out and about on the scene, on fashion etc.
I found myself smiling as I recognized certain scenarios - people waving there arms about the dance floor carelessly, tourists at the bar, fielding questions from those who ask you about your outfit etc. My favorite is people who are obviously dressed gothic but insist they are not goths! It was nice to know there were common experiences out there.
I'm just a few years younger than the author, so I think it's funny that after 30 one is considered an elder. While the local scene is mostly younger, there are a fair number of "elders" still,of various ages, and this makes me happy.
I'm also glad there are "elders" out there like Jillian who promote good manners (that warms my Victorian heart) and who express their love for the subculture with joy.
I give this book 4 out of 5 parasols.
I've posted the link to her Gothic Charm School site in the list of links to the right. You can also follow Jillian Venters on twitter @CupcakeGoth.
Any suggestions on what book I should read and review next?
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