Saturday, November 6, 2021

No Good Deed by Goldy Moldavsky


When I was texting my sister about this book, I was like, "Do you want this when I'm done? It makes fun of social justice warriors but not, like, in the conservative way, but in a 'man are these some deluded and privileged assholes' sort of way?" And she was like yes, gimme. Because of course she does. That sounds really fucking funny. And this book is really fucking funny.

NO GOOD DEED is by the same author who wrote KILL THE BOY BAND, a book that was instantly hyped because of its punchy title and edgy concept. Like everyone else, I was taken in, and like mostly everybody else, I was disappointed. I actually didn't have much interest in reading anything else by this author but then one of my friends gave me a bag of her old ARCs (because legally, you can't sell them-- I SEE YOU, UNSCRUPULOUS EBAY SELLERS), so what better to do with them than to dump them on a friend? And this book was in there, so I was like I see you, Ms. Moldavsky.

And... I actually liked this book! In fact the beginning was HILARIOUS and made me giggle several times. This is an excellent parody of how we sometimes embrace causes shallowly and superficially because we're looking for some kind of reward or a way to make ourselves look good. That's apparent with the name of the camp, Camp Save the World, which is literally filled with people who have some kind of savior complex. And one of these is our narrator, Gregor Maravilla, who really does think he can save the world, but also wouldn't mind a girlfriend.

The plot is weird to describe. Basically it's run by some billionaire dude who's never there (running joke) and there's a prize for the person who has the best philanthropic concept. Also there's a popular Hillary Duff like actress named Ashley Woodstone there who seems to be doing it for fame but is bizarrely married to her holistic cause (literally eating dirt, Gwynnie, is that you?). The competition quickly gets cutthroat and Gregor finds out that the other campers aren't so nice. Some of them even have douchey activism campaigns, like Mr. Men's Rights who wants-- men's rights. Barf.

And that's the plot. Basically.

This book has a lot of the same flaws as KILL THE BOY BAND in that it sort of falls apart in the last act and gets too ridiculous to be believed. It works better than KtBB though because it's really, really funny. This book had the satire I was expecting in KILL THE BOY BAND, and I wonder if maybe that's because the author felt way more comfortable with the material she was working with, or maybe just more comfortable as a writer? If the ending had been a bit more solid, this would have been an easy four-star review. But as it stands, this wasn't bad, and I'll be keeping an eye out for her other books.

Note: this copy happened to be an ARC so my version may be different than the final version.

2.5 to 3 out of 5 stars

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