Monday, July 19, 2004

I haven't had much time to read in the last few days, what with following The Wrens to Los Angeles like the obsessed fan I am and all the napping that trip (and their two previous San Francisco shows) required. But last night I managed to finish Alice, I Think by Susan Juby, a YA fiction book that reminded me a lot of the Adrian Mole books. Alice is a homeschooled high school student in a small town in Canada who, as one of her life goals, decides to go back to public school. Alice shares Adrian's self-absorption and naivete and viewing her world through this lens is pretty funny. Her mother is a hippie worried about the electromagnetic fields the family's new computer emits, her father doesn't do much (although he's trying to get a break by writing romance novels), her cousin is an out-of-control nightmare, and her poor brother is actually the most normal of the bunch, despite being a genius. All of the characters are well-drawn, with endearing quirks and depths, and the situations in the book consistently made me laugh. I thought I'd get annoyed at Alice, but I never really did. Even when I found her irritating, the characters around her were obviously irritated with her too and it made it that much funnier. Plus she never manages to get past page 34 in The Lord of the Rings (I managed to slog my way through to 15 pages into The Two Towers before I admitted defeat). And she loves Buffy. This was an impulse buy when I was scanning the YA section at Barnes & Noble (I must admit the silver moon boots on the cover caught my eye), and I'm glad I got it. Although I just checked and we have it here at the library, so I could've saved myself some money. Oh well.

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