Renee's Reviews > Prep

Prep by Curtis Sittenfeld
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Jan 23, 2008

it was ok

I liked this book as much as I thought I would, I suppose. I wasn't expecting too much. At parts, probably because I'm in high school right now, I can really relate to Lee's observations about her school, friends, etc. On the other hand, sometimes she just starts to get frustrating. She is so detached from everything and everyone (even her "friends") and I wanted her to find some sort of happiness by the end of her years at Ault School.

(SPOILERS!!!)

For a while there, it seemed like she was pretty content, but then all of the sudden she reveals to the NY Times reporter that she's not happy at all and she really dislikes boarding school. It just made the whole lead-up to that point seem like a waste. She was making improvements in herself, found a real friend, really changed from the socially awkward and invisible girl she was as a freshman. I didn't think she'd be happy, smiley, enthusiastic girl at the end of high school, but I at least thought she'd admit that her time at Ault had been alright. She didn't seem THAT miserable toward the end until she said it to the reporter. And when she did say it, I was just as mad as her father. Why in the world did she stay so long at Ault if she hated it there? Why? Is she a masochist? I just don't get it.

And her entire relationship with Cross annoyed me terribly. He was only in it for the sex, obviously. She told herself that she loved him, but obviously she was just in love with the sex too, and the comfort in knowing that he liked her enough to come to her during the night. I just found it all a little contrived too. Lee has an enormous crush on Cross, the golden boy, for years, and then suddenly he shows up one night and starts kissing her? They barely even know each other. He could have had any other girl in the school he wanted and yet he chose detached, awkward Lee? He never says why he likes her so much. He even admits that he wouldn't ever have been her boyfriend. But I don't blame him. I blame Lee. She knew all this, and yet she let it happen and let herself believe that it was love and not just sex. She even told him that she didn't want them to be seen together in public. It was her fault, and that's what makes it so frustrating. I wanted to slap her out of it.

(End of Spoilers!!!)

So all in all, it was just alright. Some parts I really identified with, others really frustrated me, and in the end, I just wish that Lee could have made more progress in her life. Throughout the entire thing, she's terribly apathetic. I just really wanted her to find something or someone to believe in.

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