Troy Patterson
November 02, 2001 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Cheese Monkeys: A Novel In Two Semesters

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Chip Kidd
publisher
Scribner
genre
Fiction

We gave it a C-

Superstar book designer Kidd makes his debut between covers with a tired bit of retro-kitsch. A humble freshman at ”State U” at the end of the 1950s, our protagonist gets bewitched by Himillsy Dodd, a bohemian coed of unyielding zaniness, and battered by Winter Sorbeck, a sneering bully of a graphic design teacher. Recycling the hoariest of campus jokes (”I had Abnormal Psych and Geo Sci to worry about — Nuts and Sluts and Rocks for Jocks.”) and dispensing leaden chunklets of pedagogy, Kidd speeds his broadly drawn characters to an incoherent finale. Thoroughly undergraduate.

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