Reviewed in Shelf Awareness. Book starts, "My mother is a prostitute." Gritty mystery story set in 1950s, with a growing feminist awareness. Sounds a...moreReviewed in Shelf Awareness. Book starts, "My mother is a prostitute." Gritty mystery story set in 1950s, with a growing feminist awareness. Sounds a bit like _Strings Attached._(less)
I thoroughly enjoyed another romp through the moors and performing arts school with Tallulah. This book is nothing super literary, just a lot of fun a...moreI thoroughly enjoyed another romp through the moors and performing arts school with Tallulah. This book is nothing super literary, just a lot of fun a la Bridget Jones.
A few spoilers here, not that they matter with this book:
Their school is falling apart and behind on its taxes. T's friend Honey has been spotted by Hollywood and eventually leaves the school to go there. She ends up donating enough money to keep the school going.
"Good Alex" (Ruby's brother) has gone off to college, leaving T a letter which she treasures until she discovers that he's got a girlfriend.
She talks to Charlie again, who reassures her that her kiss last term was quite good, but he must stay true to his girlfriend.
The village girls get upset that the school girls are stealing their boys, esp. the Hinchcliffs.
Cain (bad Cain!) kisses T and she loves it and is wracked with confusion about the whole thing.
She lives with the Dobbins family again, who has taken up knitting with a force (even flashlights and pacifiers have sweaters!) due to the father's involvement in the "discover your feminine side" movement.
This book was really fun but it could have been better. A very smart teen figures out that terrorists are posting codes on a reality show. After a bom...moreThis book was really fun but it could have been better. A very smart teen figures out that terrorists are posting codes on a reality show. After a bombing, she knows she's right so she goes to the FBI, who eventually kidnaps her to keep her safe, which leads to criss-crossing the country to stay safe. Great premise. Unfortunately SO many things are SO unrealistic. It was still fun to read and will appeal to Heist Society fans, but is not as good due to the issues listed below.
Things that didn't ring true: They are locked in a small room to be safe--but they can waltz out to the fire escape anytime. She has major social difficulties (Aspergers I think), but is able to successfully pretend she cares about fashion enough to be part of the popular crowd. Her FBI kidnapper falls in love with her and jeapordises his entire career to date her.
Those are the worst ones. Also, I wish her shirt on the cover were higher-necked; I was embarrassed by it. It's old-fashioned of me, I know, but the cover does make a difference, and when recommending it to people that will be the first thing they see, so I wish it weren't so revealing.(less)
John Green is simply one of the best authors writing today, period. I am still amazed that he is younger than I am (by one year)--all those heavy, awe...moreJohn Green is simply one of the best authors writing today, period. I am still amazed that he is younger than I am (by one year)--all those heavy, awesome, prize-winning books and 1.1 million tweeps in not so many years.
Anyway, this may be my favorite book of his yet. For whatever reason, I enjoyed reading about teens fighting cancer more than I've enjoyed reading his books about teens facing mental illness or emotional trauma of various sorts. It was really hard to read still, of course, because their physical suffering is so intense.
I hope to re-read it soon and copy out some of the sentences that made me really stop and think and say "wow that's true." John Green is a pretty astute observer of our world and includes all kind of literature and philosophy, including the Trolley Problem. (If you're not married to Alex, that may not make sense to you.)
SPOILER ALERT HERE:
Recap of plot: Hazel has lung cancer, she's doing okay now b/c of an experimental drug but she always is on oxygen and has a hard time breathing anc will probably die soon. She meets Augustus in her cancer teens support group (in the literal heart of Jesus). He has osteocancer (s.th. like that) with a prosthetic leg but is strong and athletic and apparently hot. They start hanging out ALL the time. There are some hilarious scenes where he drives terribly b/c of his leg. There are some touching "are we dating or not" scenes. Then he uses his cancer miracle wish to take them both to Amsterdam to meet the author of Hazel's favorite book. The author is awful to them. They eat an amazing meal outside with petals falling near the canal--this scene is absolutely perfect. I loved it. They have sex. They go to Anne Frank's house. Then she finds out Augustus' cancer is back, and now she is no longer worrying about how he will survive the agony of her death. She must survive his. And she does, beautifully.
Very good book, definitely worth reading and savoring and re-reading again.(less)