Jennifer Johnson's Reviews > Prep

Prep by Curtis Sittenfeld
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's review
May 25, 09

really liked it
Read in January, 2006

Mid way through I distinctly remember sitting up and saying "HELLO" - good read!

I was ready to be hard on this book. You would think that a book about the American class system and a private school mostly populated by wealthy kids would be salacious and interesting. You'd be wrong from pages 1-284. Then, as if though the publishing company was reading my mind, (...put the book down.... nothing.... is.... ever... going... to... happen!) page 285 (to 403) hit and then the book finally got so good I couldn't put it down for a second-- opting to stay up until 4 am to finish.

Curtis Sittenfeld's latest novel, Prep follows lower middle class student, Lee Fiora, as she enters the world of the priveleged, on a scholarship to "Ault", one of the foremost private schools in the country. Extremely low on self esteem, Lee keeps to herself, terrified of the opinions of the other students, she keenly observes her peers while remaining very mysterious to them. The book covers her entire school year of Ault- and like I said, essentially NOTHING happens until her senior year. (In fact, save yourself some time and skip it... you just get bored!) No one is especially unkind to her, but she does feel the difference she shares with them, as her family ranks in the "lower middle class" of society. She also develops a crush on the best looking boy in school, and it seems almost inattainable.

AND THEN PAGE 285 happens and it all gets good and I'm not telling you anything else. Picture this if you will... the husband and I in bed, both propped up on pillows, both silently reading. All of a sudden I sit up like a shot and scream HOLY SHIT THIS JUST GOT GOOD! That was my exact reaction when I hit page 285. Don't get me wrong, the events weren't especially significant, or especially earth shattering, I think I was just so happy to have finally gotten to the "good part" and that something finally, FINALLY happened.

I'm giving the book a 6/10. I thought the ending was great, but it took a long time for anything to happen and for me to feel anything for the main character. It just took far too long to get to something interesting, but then it does and you're almost willing to over look the horribly boring chapters.

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