No one steps up to life s banquet, holds out her tray, and orders, Grief, please But as a child, Candy Pekkala was served a heaping helping of it. Every buffet line has a dessert section, however, and when a cousin calls with a Hollywood apartment to sublet, it seems as though Candy is finally offered something sweet. It s good-bye to Minnesota and hello to California, where a girl who has always lived by her wits has a real chance of making a living with them. With that, the irrepressible Lorna Landvik launches her latest irresistible character onto the world stage or at least onto the dimly lit small stage where stand-up comedy gets its start.
Herself a comic performer, Landvik taps her own adventurous past and Minnesota roots to conjure Candy s life in this strange new Technicolor home. Her fellow tenants at Peyton Hall include a female bodybuilder, a ruined nightclub impresario, and a well-connected Romanian fortune-teller. There are game show appearances and temp jobs at a record company and an establishment suspiciously like the Playboy Mansion, and of course the alluring but not always welcoming stage of stand-up comedy. As she hones her act, Candy is tested by humiliation, hecklers, and the inherent sexism that insists chicks aren t funny.
Written with the light touch and quiet wisdom that have made her works so popular, this is classic Lorna Landvik sometimes so funny, you ll cry; sometimes so sad, you might as well laugh; and always impossible to put down.