Posted by: Lyn Rex | 12 November 2008

In Which I Reveal My Dislike for Frankie Landau-Banks (and not because of her Disreputable History either)

Because I’m spending my time recovering, as per doctor’s orders, I’ve decided to plow through this year’s nominees for the National Book Award in the Young Adult category.

Highly Recommended

Highly Recommended

The first book I read Chains by Laurie Halse Andersen had me drawn in immediately despite being about a protagonist whose life situation is nothing like mine, being that it is about a 13 year old black slave girl in Revolutionary Era America. The book, despite leaving readers with the promise of a follow-up volume, ties up loose ends and present such a real, tangible feeling of what was like in the time period for a young girl in slavery.  While I leave it for those who are more knowledgeable in these matters to prove the ways in which things are misrepresented, the story plays well and I cared about the well-developed characters.

The Book Which I Can Hardly Wait to Get Into My History

Less Recommended

The second book I am trying to get through The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart has me bored.  I’m at page ninety-eight and have far too much to read left.  At this point in the book, all I can think is that I hardly care about this chick.  She’s rich, at an elite school, pretty much guaranteed to get into  and is at some point in the text going to get into some trouble at the school, but won’t rat out the other participants.  The reviews for this book are effusive in their praise, so I’m curious as to what I’m missing. Also, at some point, the book turns into a rah-rah-rah for feminism.

I hate giving up on books.  I hate not being able to speak to people about what may be a potentially good book for their shelf or child, but at this point, I simply can’t recommend Frankie.

Tonight, for my walk, we are going to go to the bookstore and I think I will pick up one of the other nominees.  Hopefully, my bookstore will have a copy of The Spectacular Now by Tim Tharp or What I Saw and How I Lied by Judy Blundell.  The final book nominated The Underneath by Kathi Appelt, despite being about animals, really doesn’t grab my interest.  Besides, I need to get to reading though my required readings by Jacqueline Woodson for a paper I am doing on her.  If only Frankie wasn’t so damn boring, maybe I’d be able to procrastinate a little longer on actual schoolwork.


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