Monday, September 09, 2013
Author: Jenny Han
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Date of Publication: August 6th 2006
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I bought this book in a second-hand shop, having loved Han's The Summer I Turned Pretty series. I was disappointed with this one, for quite a few reasons!
The basic start didn't stop me, as I expected it: it's written from a 12 year old's perspective and most 12 year olds aren't like me (weren't, it having been my birthday a few days ago)! I expected basic language and typical "tweeness". But when the idea and determinism of "love" by the second page made me feel suffocated, almost, by the fact that it was only the first chapter, and this girl was twelve!
I let that slide, due to the fact that, as I said before, this book is from a 12 year old's perspective. Some girls are like that! What really then annoyed me if how self-conscious and almost vain this girl was; she looked at everyone's looks like you had to be pretty at twelve, and she was always on about looks! The book contained too many stereotypes, too.
I think if, as a character, Shug was older, I wouldn't have been as deterred. The fact that she was "in-love" at the age of twelve, and so funny about looks, made me quite uncomfortable. At 12, me and my friends are/were only starting to wear make-up, if any, and notice boys! We certainly weren't anything like that. Shug was also dealing with various issues at home, one of the slightly positive things, which made me think. I had lots of issues like this last year, but not the same. Shug was dealing with LGBT, divorce/arguments and alcoholics! The perspective of her, as a 12 year old, was quite strange.
I liked Elaine as a character. She was upfront, nice and liked to be different! I kind of wish we had a least one chapter from her, to see her perspective on the self-consciousness and almost obsession of her friend.
I was really sorry to have disliked this book. There were a few good bits, but they just didn't overlap the foolish love and fact that Shug was just too young a character.