Let's Read Some Trashy Books

The critical debate over whether “guilty pleasures” should actually be something to feel guilt about is as extensive as it is tedious, but the fact remains: trash is trash. That said, not all trash is equal. Some trash, either through flawless craft or extensive prurience or sheer cultural impact, enters a canon of its own. It becomes Classic Trash. These are the books you and your friends passed around in high school, the dog-eared volumes you were worried that your parents would catch you reading even though they surely had copies of their own. In celebration of these great and terrible works, we are thrilled to introduce a new recurring feature in which we will dumpster-dive our way through these timeless tracts of tawdriness. Leading the discussion will be Awl pal Nicole Cliffe, who many of you know better as the proprietrix of the delightful website Lazy Self-Indulgent Book Reviews. We will gather together on Friday to discuss the first selection: Grace Metalious’ 1956 stone-cold trash classic Peyton Place. If you’ve ever wanted an excuse to delve into the garbagey epics, consider that wish granted. Get reading! We’ll see you next week.