I’m a bad YA poster. Almost three weeks with no YA reviews, clever insights, pithy observations. It does feel like cheating since usually I post my thoughts before I get to class and hear what others think. But we’ll roll with it.
From Romance and Relationship week
Foreverby Judy Blume
I had never read this. Apparently growing up it was the dirty book that was hidden under beds and behind desks. Still is in some places. It is one of the most challenged books in school libraries, even today. And I’m not sure why. Oh, sure I know why. The main character has sex. Uncomfortable, awkward, first time, teenage sex. And sure some may consider the handling of it explicit but I saw it more clinical. The man puts his penis in the woman’s vagina. Seriously, it felt that sterile and straightforward. So I know why, I just don’t understand why. Subtle. It is a landmark book being one of the first to tackle teen sex. But really, you can find worse stuff in alot of other YA books. Since it is a classic, I won’t rate it but I really can’t see myself handing this to a teen and saying Enjoy! Honestly, I was reading romance novels by the time I hit high school. And I wasn’t harmed, much.
Boy Meets Boyby David Levithan
A more modern love story and also more emotional. Paul goes to high school the is this wonderful world where drag queens are star quarterbacks, people are tolerant of other’s sexual preference and celebrate people’s differences. When Paul meets Noah, the perfect boy, things go well until (there is always an until) things go wrong. My description of Paul’s world might be one spot where class discussion influenced me. Many of us felt it was a great world, but not a realistic one, more an idealistic one. But the characters are interesting and moving and the story is charming and sweet without being obnoxious. Favorite of the week, its pretty Awesome.
Letting Go of Lisaby Lurlene McDaniels
I avoided these books when I was younger. Why? The same reason I don’t read dead dog stories (Red Fern, Old Yeller, Marley and Me). I mean, why put yourself through that? If I need to cry I’ll watch Extreme Home Makeover or stub my toe. Why would I want to read about terminal cancer patients or teens with rare neurological diseases? Why? But I had to pick one of Lurlene’s 50 so I went with the one with the Harley on the cover. Didn’t help the story much that the terminally ill teen girl rode a bike but it was worth a try. Flat characters, predictable storyline, blah, blah, blah. So although I had preconceived notions walking in, they were justified. I mean if you want to read about death go get the Little Prince or Looking For Alaska or Harry Potter even. Lame. Sorry, I had too. No reason to put anyone through this, ever.
I’m kinda tired so I’ll finish part 2 tomorrow. I really liked the next set of books so I want to be fresh, and so clean, clean.