Dear e. lockhart

I hate Kim. I hate her so much I feel like I need to start an”I hate Kim” club. I mean I hated her in the boyfriend list because of the whole stealing Roo’s boyfriend and then justifying it with that stupid rule about it being fate or whatever, and then getting all psycho about the fact that Jackson is l what used to be called a cad, and is now called a player, and what I just call an ass. But what she does to Nora in the boy book, getting all mad at her for what are OBVIOUSLY her own issues, and not believing Roo about the whole Jackson is an ass thing, I just hate Kim. She is a selfish girl, who obviously does not value anyone’s feelings but her own particular needs. And the thing is when I read the boyfriend list I was so amazed about the relationship between the girls being the real issue, and how so many people read that different than me that it became one of my favorite books and I wish all girls would read it. And in the boy book I was sad for Roo with all her still lingering issues because of her social ostracization (because Kim is such a mean girl) and was just really rooting for her, and I am so glad she knows that Jackson is such a cad. And while I know why she made the choice at the end she did that pretty much sucked. Sorry. But that is why you do what you do so well – it was honest (we library/english teachers/reviewer types call it an “authentic voice”). But in case you missed it – I hate Kim. Loved the book.

Swollen

This may not be a very coherent post but I have decided I have to write to get this book out of my psyche, although I read it several days ago.  I am a little scared to write about this because in trying to process this book I’ve discovered Melissa Lion reads blogs and comments on them, which I’ll have more to say about in a moment.  Oh hell – I’ll say it now.  The guy who thinks this is like a Harlequin romance has his head completely up his a**.  Harlequin romances have happy endings, the good girl gets the bad guy who turns out to have a heart of gold.  Total Gone With the Wind stuff.  Although Rhett finally got his head on straight.  There really isn’t a happy ending in Swollen.  Not even close to Harlequin.

To be upfront this book touched some deep. long buried chords in me.  In fact it completely depressed me.  When I finished I had to go curl up next to my husband and just cry.  And not Lurlene McDaniel, everybody dies cry.  Just tears.  Why?  I don’t know, or more honestly have no plans of announcing why on a public forum.  Sam is the invisible girl, who falls in love (with what turns out to be a mostly inappropriate boy, but really aren’t the ones who scar us mostly inappropriate?) It goes as first loves do, and while she has experience in physical relationships, this is a first love.  Really what makes this book as good as I think it is is what is not said, what is in between the spaces.  I think one review mentioned that Sam cannot be honest with herself much less the reader, and it is her blindness that allows the reader to really enter in the story.  It isn’t easy, and I think the experience of the book is directly related to what the reader brings which I think is true of all books BTW (and which might explain why a middle aged man DID NOT get this).  I haven’t said much about what this is about because I don’t think it matters all that much.  The voice, the empty spaces, the tone, the mood all make this book one of the most affecting I read this summer.

Golden – Jennifer Lynne Barnes

My recent epiphany about character voice tells me a lot about my feelings on this book.  I had a difficult time really committing to this book.  The main character, Lissy, sees people’s auras and a lot of the social politics of the book are related through the way the auras interacted with one another.  Which is a pretty cool concept, if you have a picture in your head that reflects the way the auras are interacting.  Lissy seems to be the only one in town who knows something is wrong with her math teacher, who has a “garn” aura; which basically means he is evil.  There are some other things going on, like how many people actually have special powers like Lissys, and the Lissy coping with her power – which she hates, and some very brutal high school social politics.  While it doesn’t have the atmospherics, or intense love story of Twilight I think Twilight fans will enjoy Golden.  It definitely is a good book for those of you who enjoy the supernatural twist on chick lit.

Golden Compass on film

Now this is a casting I can get behind.

Must say very excited about a Golden Compass movie. And Nicole Kidman as Mrs. Coulter – very nice.