Tessa's Reviews > The Diamond Girls

The Diamond Girls by Jacqueline Wilson
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Mar 28, 2012

it was ok
Read from March 15 to 28, 2012

The Diamond Girls is a novel by Jacqueline Wilson. Wilson has written many other children and tween novels. I haven’t read any of her other works, but I saw some of the series Girls in Love when I was younger. That was an adaption of the book of the same title by Wilson. The book is written in first person perspective and follows story of ten year old Dixie Diamond. The novel is set in England. Dixie is the youngest of four children, all daughters. They are a poor family. Dixie is a daydreamer; Rochelle (the next oldest)is a flirt and a drama queen; Jude is tough; and the oldest, Martine, is forever thinking of her boyfriend. Their mother, Sue, is heavily pregnant at the start of the novel and is ever so glad to be finally having a baby boy. Each of the Diamond girls has a different father. Martine's is in Australia, Jude's is violet, Rochelle's is dead, and Dixie's is an embalmer. Sue spends a lot of time fortune telling, reading tarot cards and calculating star charts. The Diamond Girls live in a flat; the neighboring mothers think Sue is a "slag". Sue buys a new house on the Planet Estate. They all think it is going to be a lovely big beautiful house. Only it isn't. It is run down, dirty, graffitied, and has somebody's vomit in the kitchen sink. Before they have even unloaded all of their furniture (from Bruce the florist's van) Sue's water breaks and is rushed to hospital. This is my view of the events at the start of the novel. I am viewing it though critical eyes. A younger child may see the events differently.

I did not enjoy reading this book. It was a pain and a struggle. I found myself constantly putting off reading it. I didn't find myself relating to any of the characters, though I can see some tweens relating to Dixie. This is because Dixie is constantly being told that she is too little to be of any use. Dixie is always going off into her own little dream land - Dixie Planet. I, personally, can't stand it (in a book). It isn't enjoyable to read within the context of the book. And as I can really only see tweens and younger children (girls) relating to Dixie the content of the book is inappropriate. There is a lot of swearing (though the actual swear words are not written in the book). Some of Dixie's sisters are in a situation where they may have been raped. And Dixie's friend and neighbour is beaten by her mother! And one of the key points in the story (spoilers!)is that Dixie's mother is pretending her baby daughter is her son. Sue is either experiencing post-natal depression or has pi-polar disorder. Dixie's older sisters and Sue are constantly fighting; and it drove me mad reading it! It was so repetitive! It was almost the same argument over and over again! The ending of the book feels like a bit of a cop out. I don’t want to spoil it but everything seems to tie together for the wrong reasons. Dixie ends up in an accident and everyone realizes how important family is blah, blah. It feels half done to me.

However, I see the elements in the novel that make it a good children/tween book. The main character is relatable, to some people. The subject matter is a bit more advanced compared to children’s books. Though I don't personally agree with this it does make the book attractive to some tweens. The main character daydreams and has lots of fantasies. The text is simple enough for the target audience and is easy to read. The story is dumbed down for the audience but still allows them to work the story out for themselves. And it has a happy ending where the main character has her wishes come true.

All in all I didn't enjoy the book., at all. But I can see how it may be enjoyable for the target audience.
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