Missie's Reviews > Good Oil

Good Oil by Laura Buzo
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May 03, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: aussie-title, contemporary, ya
Read in April, 2011

From page two into this book, a goofy grin formed on my lips and played there until I finished it. I just couldn't help myself. The flood of memories I got from Amelia as she shared her story of unrequited affections hit true and deep as I juxtaposed them to my own experiences of first loves to first heartbreaks to everything in between.

Smart, sensitive, and a bit naive Amelia couldn't possibly help falling in love with jestingly funny Chris. Chris treats Amelia like no one ever has. He pays attention to what she has to say, and it makes her giddy with the idea of where their heartfelt conversations could lead. The possibilities seem endless. But as Amelia moons over Chris, he moons over girls that are far different from Amelia. Why can't he see that they don't deserve even a minute of his attentions? And will she ever be able to get him to see that the girl of his dreams is standing right in front of him?

Written with subtle humor and filled with jargon that is uniquely Australian, Buzo guides readers through of journey of aching emotions and raging hormones that are those of young adults trying to get a handle on life. There are no easy answers as they discover that the expectancies they place on themselves are far more harsh than any coming from those around them.

Despite the six year age difference, I found myself wanting to see Amelia and Chris have their happily ever after, but the fact that they couldn't really, at least not at that juncture in their lives, was the best thing about the story. It was authentic in its candor. Sternly disciplining me as a reader to accept that theirs was a relationship of real friendship and sacrifice.

I really liked being able to read the story through both Amelia and Chris's perspective. The maddening crush that Amelia had on Chris certainly pulled at my heartstrings, especially since her musings were a clash of innocent fantasy and frustrating reality. From Chris's POV, you get that he is an intelligent young man that is looking for more than his next conquest, but if that happens to happen along the way, well, he isn't opposed to it. Still, he is much more than a typical guy. He has a charm that makes you want to be smarter, better, even prettier just to be close to him, and it wasn't hard to see why Amelia was so smitten. And as much as I wished for a way for them to come together, I have to admit that it was a relief to know that he never allowed himself to taint his respect for Amelia or for her youth. He earned my admiration and adoration for that.

Desperately delightful, Good Oil was a different kind of love story. One of soul searching, acceptance and friendship.
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