Is "Gidget" worth reading for its protrayal of early Malibu surf culture?

Or would the narrator’s irrepressably breathless, giddy style and fixation on surfer dudes all too quickly drive this 48-year old male around the bend? The thing is, I think certain aspects of pop culture are fascinating, especially when it comes to how they got started, and that definitely includes surfer culture. That’s true, even though I’ve never surfed. Gidget is supposed to be a worthwhile depiction of the nascent surf culture of Malibu in the late 1950s, but is it good enough to balance out the fact that it is being narrated by a teenage girl character, who’d obviously be focused on a lot of things that I have no interest in?

I haven’t read the book, although since you’ve told me about it I think I will try to track it down, but I believe Kohner is mentioned in Stacy Peralta’s excellent documentary Riding Giants, and I highly recommend you give it a peek.

She’s an amusing teenage girl, though. I really enjoyed the book – it’s a good deal different than you’d expect from the movie, believe me. Give it a shot. Anyway, it’s a short easy read, even if you just skim it for the surfing bits.

This month’s “Vanity Fair” has an excellent article on the 60s surf culture, including comments from & pictures of “Gidget”, along with Sallie Sachse & Mike Nader.


I think “Gidget” might be a little cleaned up, if you know what I mean. Sometimes that’s okay, if you know what they’re hinting at, but sometimes they can give you a very wrong impression.

I bought it, and that’s what got me onto this! I don’t usually even notice VF, but this one caught my eye exactly because it had this article, and it seems that this magazine always lists all the major pieces right on the cover.

It’s the last place I would have expected to see a picture of Jim Morrison.