Carrie Diaries: A chronicle of Carrie’s life before Sex and the City

What was Carrie Bradshaw like when she was at high school?

As the world awaits the reunion of Sarah Jessica Cynthia Nixon, Kim Cattralll and Kristen Davis in Sex and the City 2 (the movie releases May 27), author Candace Bushnell offers an insight to a time when the savvy New York singleton was a small-town teenager attempting to find herself.

HarperTeen on April 27, 2010, releases The Carrie Diaries, Candace Bushnell’s chronicle of how Carrie Bradshaw evolved into a sophisticated writer and fashionista from a high school senior in a Connecticut town.

Candace Bushnell said the story is not about Carrie Bradshaw as a teenager in 2009, but about Carrie Bradshaw in the late 1970s – “a time when young women for the first time…were being told to go college, to have a career, to pursue your dreams.”

The Carrie Diaries details – as usual, in first-person narrative – Carrie’s evolving fashion sensibilities, her romantic relationships, her thoughts on teen culture and her hopes of becoming a writer. The book, which Candace Bushnell hopes will attract teen readers and young women, can be best described as Carrie’s coming-of-age story.

The Carrie Diaries is Bushnell’s sixth novel. Her last, One Fifth Avenue, was released in 2008. Former best-sellers Sex and the City (1996) and Lipstick Jungle (2005) were hit TV series, which were followed by the Sex and the City movie.

Candance Bushnell, 51, moved to New York when she was 19 years old, hoping to become a writer. She says it was a fascinating time, something she wanted to write about. She says it’s fascinating to revisit a character in an earlier time and see how it evolved, adding that Carrie Bradshaw seems the perfect character to go back in time with.

She rubbished reports that this was her memoir, stating that the book is completely fictional.

The young Carrie has shades of the grown-up Carrie. On her first day of senior year, she rocks a pair of vintage white patent-leather go-go boots, perhaps the beginning of her trend-setting status. She also has a couple of close BFFs – Samantha, Charlotte, and Miranda are replaced by Lali and Maggie.

What of romantic relationships? While the adult Carrie has an on-off, not-married, married relationship (the marriage is kind of on the rocks in Sex and the City 2 movie!) with Mr. Big (Chris North), in high school she gets the boyfriend every young girl dreams of – Sebastian Kydd.

Alessandra Balzer, Candace Bushnell’s editor, expects that The Carrie Diaries will appeal to a wide fan base, despite being a teen book. Women of any age will love it, she said.

The Carrie Diaries is the first of two books about young Carrie. The second, about Carrie’s first summer in New York, is slated to be released in summer 2011.

In the second book, Carrie meets Samantha – who’s about eight years older to Carrie – and spends a lot of time with her, Bushnell said.

Back to the adult Carrie Bradshaw. For those who want to know what happens two years after Carrie and Mr. Big tie the knot, watch Sex and the City 2, the much-anticipated sequel to the first movie.

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