H.S.J. Williams's Reviews > The Revised Life of Ellie Sweet

The Revised Life of Ellie Sweet by Stephanie Morrill
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really liked it
bookshelves: reviews-four-star

The Revised Life of Ellie Sweet dropped me into the body of a quiet, writerly high-school girl who sometimes bore such a similarity to myself it was scary, though I do have the great advantage of getting along much better with my family.

The book was highly engaging, creating a character so real I could practically reach through the pages and poke her. Her struggles and frustrations made me ache, and though I loved her, there were so many times when I just wanted to shake some sense into her. While I couldn't relate to many of her experiences through high-school (thank goodness), I totally connected with her struggles of writing and fears of rejection when pursuing publishing.

But while the story was very well-written, I did have some problems with it. For one...Chase Chevantes. Lots of girls like the idea of reforming the bad boy (who doesn't like the idea of redemption?), but in this story its actually working. Which worries me that some teenage girls might start thinking that guys like Chase on the outside are like Chase on the inside. Which some might be. But I personally find it a very bad idea for the Christian girl to try to bring it out, rather than a really great friend who's a guy. Oh sure, there was all the good wisdom from mature figures about guys being on their best behavior around a girl for only a little while, and Chase was certainly far from perfect. And it's cool that Ellie's parents are now in on the loop (she kept WAY too many secrets from them) and that Chase is considering going to church. Still, I'm wary about the effect this might have on girls. Also, it was strange that the bad rumors about Chase were pretty much just brushed aside.

Since Ellie was a Christian, I would have liked to seen her pursue her walk with God a bit more, besides prayers in moments of panic. It might have helped her in her lonely or confused times.

Language Content - None.

Sexual Content - This is YA contemporary novel set in very morally loose high school. While nothing is ever shown, it is indicated that several of the kids lead sexual lifestyles. And while, Ellie is a sweet Christian girl with a fairly strong moral compass, even she is so affected by today's modern culture, she thinks that first date means first kiss. And there are a few kisses. Plus, plenty of break-ups. Yep. High-school romance drama. Not my thing.

Violence - Pretty much none, aside from some rumors.

Other Negatives - Ellie's former friends are all jerks. And Ellie herself is one of the most proficient liars I've encountered in quite a while. : /

So...was Ellie a great example for young ladies of today? No, not really. Was she an great example of a young lady? Absolutely. None of us are perfect. We all make mistakes, all struggle. And Ellie is maturing. This a book of coming of age, of discovering who you are and gaining confidence in it.

It was a great YA contemporary novel. Personally, I'm not a huge fan of YA contemporary novels. But it was good, nonetheless.
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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
January 28, 2014 – Shelved as: to-read
January 28, 2014 – Shelved
March 1, 2015 – Shelved as: reviews-four-star

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