Friday, June 8, 2007

Dangerously Alice

I hope this doesn't make me a bad librarian, but I've never read any other "Alice" Books. As a result, the first half of this novel was pretty rough on me. Naylor doesn't provide much, if any, description of her character other than "African American" and "braces". Alice has friends, and then she has frenemies, her family, the cancer kid, the mentally impaired kid, and then there are the boys Alice knows and has or has not dated. I feel like a need a crib sheet with all the past happenings that fills these characters in for me. Alice, like all awkward teens in novels dealing with school social scenes, dwells on her frenemies, who refer to her as DD and MGT. I don't think teens today would ever actually use the phrase, "Dry as Dust".

That said, I found the second half of the book very interesting, especially the frank explorations of sexuality. The boring, mundane little world Alice inhabits finally became a little more real at these moments of excitement, awakening, and embarrassment. Its a bit like Judy Blume, updated for the smart girls. If I was making a best of list for the Alice Books, I am sure this one would be on there, but this one gets a Maybe Nay for Thumbs Up.


At June 14, 2007 at 11:30 AM , Blogger Karrie said...

I'm with you: I'd never read any of the previous Alice books and felt like I needed a "who's who" primer. I couldn't even get to the point where it apparently starts getting better; the falseness of the dialogue just made me gnash my teeth. NAY for Alice.

At June 26, 2007 at 2:19 PM , Blogger Elizabeth Norton said...

Agreed. Nay, nay, a thousand times NAY. I was lost the whole time, and for the record, I think Alice is shallow and ...argh.

Just sayin' NAY.


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