Candy (Brooks novel)
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The story opens when Joe from a single parent family, a music lover and with a knack for curiosity - meets 16-year-old Candy on the streets of London. He soon learns that Candy is not only a runaway from her home town, but also a teenage prostitute and heroin addict. He immediately becomes infatuated with her.
The pair begins dating cautiously, visiting London Zoo once, and Candy comes to see a gig that Joe and his band, The Katies, are playing. However, Candy's pimp, Iggy, feels that Joe Beck is a threat, worrying that Joe will reduce the business Candy takes in and thus reducing Iggy's income. When Joe finds Candy beaten, the pair attack Iggy and leave the city to hide and ease Candy off heroin.
Iggy subsequently kidnaps Joe's older sister Gina, and uses her as a bargaining chip, claiming to plan to return her if Candy is returned to him. The novel climaxes when Iggy, Candy, Joe, his sister and his sister's boyfriend encounter one another at the family's remote country house. Candy stabs Iggy in the neck and the main story concludes. Candy is sent off to a rehab centre for adolescents and Joe has a final meeting with her. Candy apologizes for everything and gets taken away. Joe is left wondering over her whereabouts and if he will ever see her again. The last chapter briefly explains that Joe's band received a record deal and had recorded Joe's song that he had written for Candy. They called several times for his permission to record it, but he never returned the calls. Although Joe was not at all upset by this, Candy very much was. This led to the last scene having Candy cry in Joe's arms, asking why their song was recorded. Did he have something to do with it? Left hanging on the streets all alone when Candy leaves, Joe is baffled, heartbroken, and still deeply in love.
Joe Beck : young, naïve and caring, he is the novel's protagonist. Joe was in a band called The Katies, who at the end go off without him and record. He is obsessed with Candy.Does every thing he can to help Candy with her addiction.
Candy (Candice): A young prostitute, runaway, and heroin addict.
Iggy : Candy's pimp, who controls her life, using her addiction as a tool. He is a violent man, bent on destroying Candy and Joe's forbidden relationship.
Gina : Joe's older sister. She cares and worries for Joe but is supportive of his relationship with Candy. takes care of Joe and is very close with him.
Mike : Gina's fiance. He provides Joe with many favors through his inside connections in his DJing hobby.Has a good understanding of Iggy and his crew.
In a review of the novel, Professor Wendy Kelleher of Arizona State University states that the book focuses on the fact that "from the stories of Eve's seduction in the Garden of Eden to the present, men and women have chased the forbidden, sacrificing everything else in the bargain". Brooks plays with this fundamental, human instinct through the use of Candy's drug addiction. As the story unfolds, language referring to drug addiction begins to describe Joe's love for Candy. The more Joe becomes involved with Candy, the more Joe becomes obsessed with how Candy makes him feel. In the novel, Joe claims "she fired me up and turned my body inside out...and usually that would have messed me up so much I wouldn't have been able to feel anything, but this time I could feel it". Therefore, Candy's drug addiction mirrors the obsessive love Joe has for her.