Friday, June 3, 2016

Review: #GirlBoss

The founder of Nasty Gal offers a sassy and irreverent manifesto for ambitious young women

At seventeen, Sophia Amoruso decided to forgo continuing education to pursue a life of hitchhiking, dumpster diving, and petty thievery. Now, at twenty-nine, she is the Founder, CEO, and Creative Director of Nasty Gal, a $100+ million e-tailer that draws A-list publicity and rabid fans for its leading-edge fashion and provocative online persona. Her story is extraordinary—and only part of the appeal of #GIRLBOSS.

This aspirational book doesn’t patronize young women the way many business experts do. Amoruso shows readers how to channel their passion and hard work, while keeping their insecurities from getting in the way. She offers straight talk about making your voice heard and doing meaningful work.

She’s proof that you can be a huge success without giving up your spirit of adventure or distinctive style. As she writes, "I have three pieces of advice I want you to remember: Don’t ever grow up. Don’t become a bore. Don’t let The Man get to you. OK? Cool. Then let’s do this.”

Rating: 5 Stars

Book Title: #GirlBoss

Author: Sophia Amoruso

Release Date: May 6th, 2014

Pages: 256

Publisher: Portfolio


            I followed Sophia Amoruso’s every movement in high school when I was still obsessed with the fashion industry and determined to go to school for a degree in business fashion. Since then, I’ve continued to follow Sophia and her company, Nasty Gal, with the same fascination I had as a teenager, but my dreams have changed a bit. I am still a fashion fanatic, don’t get me wrong, and my closet is my happy place, but I no longer want to pursue a degree in the same field. That being said, I still put #GirlBoss on my TBR the second I heard about it because I couldn’t wait to read the story behind Nasty Gal.
            For those of you who haven’t heard of this brand, the best way I can describe it is: unapologetically uncool.  And that’s what’s so flipping cool about this company.  Sophia’s story is unique, because unlike most people in the fashion community, she didn’t go to school for fashion, and she doesn’t have an “in” in the industry (try saying that five times fast).  Nasty Gal all started when Sophia had been through countless jobs and was dumpster diving to make a living and find food.  The clothes she found at thrift stores were vintage and she began selling them on eBay. 
            What I loved about #GirlBoss was that it is evident Sophia wrote the entire thing herself, no ghostwriters or outside help needed. There’s no impersonating Sophia’s quirk, and her writing in this book is extremely reflective of her attitude and self.  For someone without a college degree (and very little high school), Sophia is by far one of the wittiest and brightest writers I know.  Her writing, while exquisite and remarkable, is also downright informal at the same time.  This combination is what made reading #GirlBoss so enjoyable.  One minute, I had my dictionary out next to me to look up a half dozen words Sophia used that I had no clue what they were. The next I’m laughing my butt off because she used slang or made a drug reference in that same chapter.  The girls got style!
            My other favorite element of #GirlBoss is that it has some REALLY sound business and life advice.  Whether you’re going into the fashion field or not, Sophia’s book is all about how to market yourself in the work field and how to get that job you’ve always wanted, even if it’s just at a fast food place.  There’s so many ways girls out there will benefit from picking up this book, whether you’re looking for interviewing advice, what to do when you can’t find the job you’re looking for, or even how to handle yourself in a new setting once you’ve landed that dream job.  I also think Sophia’s experience working a lot of minimum wage jobs before becoming CEO of her own company only serves to add to her credibility.  She’s been in your shoes (quite literally, she’s all about that vintage!:) ) and she knows what it’s like to scrape by paycheck to paycheck. But she’s also had the experience now of working in the business world and running her own company. So now she’s on the other end of the spectrum, and doing all the hiring and job recruitment that she was never a part of before. 
            Maybe it’s just because fashion has always been an intrinsic part of my life, or because I am going into business and love reading about successful companies, but I thought #GirlBoss was wonderful. It was an extremely fast read and I loved that Nasty Gal’s business methods are so unique.

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