WillowBe's Reviews > Rage: A Love Story

Rage by Julie Anne Peters
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's review
Dec 19, 2011

liked it
bookshelves: gay-protagonist, a-heroines-journey
Read from December 19, 2011 to January 15, 2012

I think this is a great book for GLBT teens. FYI, there is no ACTUAL sex. There are is frank sexuality in daydreams and longing, but there is much more SENSUALITY than sex. And I didn't find it offesnsive at all. It took a while to get to the climax, and watching Johanna's descent was painful. I felt like- why isn't anyone SEEING this child?? Why can't they look beyond their own needs and expectations to guide a young person who is desperate for deep connections?? but then we all know the answer to that: like Jeannette, noone wants to get too involved.

*****************************MAJOR SPOILERS NEXT-- STOP READING NOW!!!!*************************************************************************************************

My big beef with the book is killing off Robbie . Why, why, why???? If the goal is to give Reeve the space she needs to grow into her own person without having the burden of a disabled sibling, that could have been accomplished by having Robbie kill Anthony- who surely deserved it!- and then enter the penal system. Tessa could have helped him find a fantastic disabled aware public defender who could have then used the senior project essay as proof that they had been through long-standing abuse- used a "Burning Bed" kind of defense. I thought that's why we had the essay in the first place- to serve two functions, not just to alert Jo to their messed up situation. That was a waste of all the time they spent on the essays. yeah, jail would have been hard, but he could have gone to some special unit for mentally different people, or undergone some kind of special school where he'd be trained in social skills, educated with his abilities and disabilities in mind, taught a trade, etc. He wanted just what Johanna wanted- love and connection. And to just kill him off?
I thought that was disrespectful to the character. Reeve could still have learned self-control without him serving as her outward stop mechanism. At the least, it would have given parity between Reeve and Jo- both with dead mothers, but caring siblings and at least one good friend.

Maybe it woudl have seemed to much of a HE, but I think it would have respected the concern and empathy we put into learning to like a character who was so initiallly repellant.


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