Michelle's Reviews > The Treasure Map of Boys: Noel, Jackson, Finn, Hutch, Gideon—and me, Ruby Oliver

The Treasure Map of Boys by E. Lockhart
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Feb 23, 11

bookshelves: faves, humor, young-adult
Read in February, 2011

Dear Miss E. Lockhart,

I cannot ardently enough express my love for this book...best in the series so far. Ruby makes me jittery and uncomfortable, just like I am reliving my teenage years...something I know I should not enjoy so very very much, but I'll be darned if I can put your books down. Seriously.

Love,

Michelle


Disclaimer/confession...before I tell you why I love this book, and all the books I've read by Lockhart so far. I jumped on the Twilight bandwagon...I'm not ashamed to say I enjoyed the ride while it lasted. Pure escapism - nothing wrong with that. And yes I realize that Bella is somewhat of a twit, that her romance with Edward is entirely unhealthy and obsessive and nothing like that exists in real life without heads exploding or other horrible happenings. But I'm kind of over the whole "oh my boyfriend is so dreamy/perfect/gorgeous/what a demi-god and I am so in love with him and life will be perfect when we are together...always...when he turns me into an immortal vampire/werewolf/whatever..." blah, blah, blah. Because again, that is not real life. Most especially, I'm sort of sick of all the other writers jumping on the bandwagon. Every time I check out the young adult section at the library or B&N, I find myself cringing. Vampire, werewolf, vampire, werewolf. Oh brother. Enough already. Angsty, teenage drama over immortal, or better yet, sycophantic love please die!

And please, please replace said genre with more E. Lockhart...more Ruby Oliver...more Frankie Landau Banks! As my good friend Adrienne said, these books are restoring my love for YA literature. Single-handedly. They are fresh and smart. Hilarious comes to mind. And they still contain all that teenage angst and drama, just toned down to a realistic, intelligent level. Lockhart is not pandering to her audience. She's creating lovably flawed characters. They have substance and wit of their own. Ruby may be boy crazy - don't know many sixteen year old girls who are not - but she isn't insane. I guess what I am saying is that I wish more authors would write characters like Ruby and Frankie. You can even keep the fantasy elements (hello, Hermione Granger is one of my fave characters of all time...and she's a smart, and she kicks trash, to boot!). But please, please, please can the female lead have a voice of her own...or at least honest feelings about navigating the dating world whilst only sixteen? And can she realize her life will go on if the "love of her life" turns out to be not so much the "love of her life"?

Conclusion? The fantasy, escapist lit of the vampire world might be a fun treat once in a while. But reality is really just so much much much better!
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