Catfairy Reads YA's Reviews > Teen Spirit

Teen Spirit by Francesca Lia Block
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it was amazing
bookshelves: halloweeny, arc-copy

When I first picked up a Francesca Lia Block at 16 years old it was at a time that I felt lost and felt those typical teenage feelings like no one understood me. (This book brought me back to my teenage self so much that I was even inspired to catch a few Buffy the Vampire episodes for old times on Netflix...will explain as to why later on:) ) Francesca Lia Block had the remarkable ability to make me see the beauty in my life and to see the beauty in myself even through all my quirks and eccentricities. Reading the book "Teen Spirit" resurfaced those feelings for me again. Francesca Lia Block's writing style has always been prevalent in all her books but this book in particular reminded me of her Dangerous Angels series in so many parts of the book. After reading this book I think that Francesca Lia Block should continue a series and show Julie in college and so on. The story was so entertaining and the characters were so complex and intriguing that they should be brought back for a second round!

The story begins with Julie...

Julie is an awkward teenager with a pension for vintage clothes who is absolutely content with her life living in her 1940's Spanish style house with her mom and grandma. Her mom is a writer for a television show and her grandmother is Julie's rock and she is always the person that Julie can confide in when it comes to her high school woes, boys and their common love for vintage clothing. Julie takes comfort with her simple life until things don't become as simple as they used to be. It all started when her grandmother is just having a conversation with Julie and she is about to reveal something important and then without warning Julie's grandmother passes away in front of her. Julie and her mother are completely shocked and lost without her and things take a turn for the worse after the grandmother's passing. Julie's mother loses her writing job and they are forced to foreclose on their house and move to an apartment and Julie had to change schools.

Julie slowly gets deeper into her depression and realizes that she can't function in her life without her grandma. Julie doesn't even have the support from her own mother who is going into online dating and begins to date a loser middle aged guy in a band who likes to wear fishnet stockings. Julie is desperate to see her grandma and find a way to communicate with her. Then once she starts her new school she meets a goofy guy named Clark who has pension for wearing zany hats such as moose hats, monkey hats, porkpie hats, obsessed with Buffy the Vampire Slayer and he enjoys eating kicharee.

As Julie gets to know Clark she discovers there is more to Clark than his wacky hats and his culinary talents. She shares with him her loss of her grandmother and expresses a desire to contact her grandmother. As soon as Julie mentions the ouijia board to Clark he is reluctant to do it with her and tries to keep her away from it. Soon enough Julie finds out his real reasons for staying away from the ouigia board...

Julie evokes an unexpected spirit and therefore begins a twisted love triangle that involves Clark and a boy named Grant who claims to be Clark's twin brother. Grant is the bad boy version of Clark and is more of the sexy 4.0 version of Clark minus the nerdy hats...

One of the main aspects of the book that really intrigued me were the supernatural scenes such as the auras that Julie had the ability to see with each person she met, the rituals, the glass bottles of flower-and-gem essences, and not to mention the aura ring that Julie was instructed to wear that resembled a mood ring which is something that I have always loved to wear as a kid.

Even though this book is classified as young adult the writing is so exceptional that anyone could pick up the book and be able to enjoy it in some way. Reading this book brought back memories for me of when I first began to read her books and her writing of this book made me realize why I love Francesca Lia Block so much!

Teen Spirit was everything that I hoped for in a supernatural read and more! I felt like I was on a journey right there with Clark and Julie and I was loving every minute of it! I loved how Francesca Lia Block wrote the characters of Julie and Clark because they were easy to love but they were real teenagers with their flaws, insecurities and angst to go along with it. She delved into the characters stories so fluidly and I was rooting for Clark and Julie to finally have their own happy ending every step of the way! The most important lesson that I learned from this book is that death is something we shouldn't dwell over and obsess about because our beautiful and complicated lives are right in our very own fingertips...
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Reading Progress

February 8, 2014 – Started Reading
February 8, 2014 – Shelved
February 9, 2014 –
page 11
February 9, 2014 –
page 19
7.92% ""Even when things weren't great, when I was lonely or felt bad about myself, I always had my grandma, my mom, and this house-my light-dappled bedroom, my cool-sheeted bed, the joyful trees. Coming home after another day at school to the scent of fresh herbs and lemons. My grandmother waiting with poetry and pastries. I wanted to tie myself to the door so that the bank would have to let us stay.""
February 9, 2014 –
page 35
February 11, 2014 –
page 66
February 17, 2014 –
page 101
February 17, 2014 –
page 113
47.08% ""If I was honest with myself, I wanted them both. I wanted a best friend and I wanted someone who wasn't afraid of everything.""
February 17, 2014 –
page 118
February 18, 2014 –
page 133
February 20, 2014 –
page 143
February 23, 2014 –
page 152
63.33% ""I could breathe better, even on a bridge called Suicide.""
February 24, 2014 –
page 154
64.17% "Guava and cheese pastries...:)"
February 25, 2014 –
page 177
February 27, 2014 –
page 197
March 1, 2014 – Finished Reading
March 2, 2014 – Shelved as: halloweeny
March 19, 2014 – Shelved as: arc-copy

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