Thursday, February 11, 2010
Two girlfriend books
I read two "girlfriend" books recently: Girlfriend Material by Melissa Kantor and How to Take the Ex out of Ex-boyfriend by Jeanete Rallison.
Girlfriend Material is about a young woman with grandiose notions about what life should be, what (who) she thinks she wants to be, and how she thinks things will go. But life sometimes steps in and insists on foisting reality upon us, and so it is for young Miss Kate. Kate wants to spend the summer playing tennis, writing, hanging out with her friends. Kate's parents, however, want a separation period, so Kate is forced to go to Cape Cod with her mother for the summer instead. Admittedly, I don't think the words "forced" and "Cape Cod" can legitimately be placed in the same sentence, but this is Kate's world, not mine.
On Cape Cod, of course Kate meets an adorable boy, Adam, and falls madly in love with him. She also gets a job and discovers things about herself, about love, and about her parents marriage that she hadn't really faced before. Kate is a great narrator with a very authentic voice, and although her cluelessness about the state of her parents' marriage seems a bit unrealistic, I'm thinking that perhaps this was just a survival technique and although she knew deep down things were pretty bad, she never let that rise to the top. I'm thinking differently about denial since reading After by Amy Efaw. Fans of romance and coming-of-age stories will enjoy this book.
In How to take the Ex out of Ex Boyfriend, the main character Giovanna (and really, is that not one of the world's best names?), is dating super cute and sweet Jesse. That is, until he starts supporting the opposition in the student council race for President. you see, Giovanna's twin brother Dante is running, so Giovanna feels like she HAS to support him. Plus, there's the fact that the other guys is pretty much a jerk. Giovanna can't understand why Jesse is supporting this guy, and he won't tell her his reason (which is finally revealed in the end, but it's a long time coming...). So, she breaks up with him. I'm wondering how many siblings would take that strong of a stance. I mean, I think it's great, but I'm not sure it's too realistic. Choose my brother over a cute, sweet boy? In high school? Really? Rallison makes it work, though, in part, no doubt, because Giovanna realizes pretty quickly that although she doesn't understand what he did or why, she still really likes him.
It's a light, fun, funny read that romance fans will love.