Misadventures in the (213) is also available on audio with Dennis reading for Craig and a full cast of actors in the other roles, including Kathy Griffin as Dandy Rio. The audio book was nominated for an award…but we didn’t win so I don’t remember what the award was called.



Misadventures in the 213 was released in the summer of 1998 and promptly landed on the LA Times Bestsellers List. It was based on the column of the same name from Detour magazine.


And here’s the book jacket text:

Imagine, if you will, a world without Dr. Joyce Brothers. A world without game show hosts and liposuction and teenage beauty pageants and gratuitous award shows and would-be screenwriters who lug their laptops to coffee houses. A world where aspiring starlets would never even think of posing for nude photos and waitresses weren't noticeably crankier during pilot season. A world without Melrose Place. A world without headshots. A world without Cher. Pretty damn grim, huh?

Luckily, for pop culture junkies everywhere, this is not the world depicted in Dennis Hensley's debut novel Misadventures in the (213).

"(213)?" you may ask.

That's the area code for Hollywood, silly, the land our genial hero, aspiring screenwriter Craig Clybourn, and his cadre of celebrity-obsessed friends call home. Hollywood, the kind of moral no-man's land where someone relatively sensible, like our Craig, could be cajoled into kidnapping fish from Tina Louise's koi pond in the name of love or into rigging a movie test screening he's officiating so that his actress pal doesn't end up on the cutting room floor. Or into joining a garage band just to impress a potential love slave he met while doing extra work on Murder She Wrote. You get the idea.

Packed with Hollywood life-lessons and more B-level celebs than all the Battle of the Network Stars specials combined, Misadventures in the (213) is a brilliantly witty and poignant journey through the Tinseltown spin cycle.