Review: ‘Dirty Blonde: The Diaries of Courtney Love’

In the intro, Courtney Love admits she has not written a book. No argument there. This isn't a book -- it's a loose, sloppy, vain ode to self. This is little more than the lint, lyrics and ticket stubs pulled out of one's pocket and put on display.

In the intro, Courtney Love admits she has not written a book. No argument there. This isn’t a book — it’s a loose, sloppy, vain ode to self. Like a handful of other ego-driven hardcover scrapbooks, this is little more than the lint, lyrics and ticket stubs pulled out of one’s pocket and put on display. Even worse, it commits the terrible sin of being boring — and who ever thought Courtney Love could be boring?

In her defense, if the average reader were to dive into the book like a garbologist would to waste, they might discover more about her than may be revealed in a formal biography. The unfiltered detritus from the widow of the late Kurt Cobain — her grade-school reports and teen-in-angst journal in which she writes that, from an early age, she has always wanted to be a rock star — give a glimpse into a striving, lipsticked blur.

Outside of her fans, “Dirty Blonde” does not deliver; like her journals, it’s a self-serving purge. Love’s neighbor, thesp-turned-scribe Carrie Fisher, wrote the preface, which lends a Hollywood insider’s stamp of approval, even while serving as an extended dust-jacket blurb.

In the end, the reader is left wondering why Love would put together “Dirty Blonde” and not something with more heft and purpose. Between the family pictures and the memory box mementos, there’s a great story. It’s a shame she didn’t distill her watershed moments into a thoughtful book more deserving of her wild, storied and chaotic life.

Dirty Blonde: The Diaries of Courtney Love

Faber & Faber; 292 Pgs.; $35

Production

By Courtney Love
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