Recommended by: God knows. Some website. I remember seeing it but I didn’t take note of where and now I can’t remember. I’m cute but dumb.
I actually bought this book mainly out of terror and dismay, as it sounded a lot like a story I’m in the process of drafting, and when I read about it I freaked out immediately and started having depressing dreams in which Sara Zarr (who looked a lot like Scheherazade from the TV movie of Arabian Nights, damn her) came and fussed at me for writing a lamer version of the exact same story she had written. This isn’t very admirable and demonstrates deep insecurities and also a hitherto unacknowledged desire to look like Mili Avital, but there it is, that’s what I dreamed.
To my relief, this book is really nothing like my story at all, so Mili Avital/Sara Zarr/my mean old embarrassing grouch of a subconscious can just leave me alone. It’s about a girl called Jennifer (hmph) who was a misfit outcast girl in elementary school and she had a best friend called Cameron and they were outcasts together, and then Something Happened when they were nine and Cameron left very unexpectedly and Jennifer recreated herself. And named herself Jenna. And then when she is seventeen, Cameron comes back.
(Please, like that’s an improvement. There are other, better nicknames for Jennifer than that. Just saying.)
I enjoyed this book. Ms. Zarr (who incidentally doesn’t look any more like Mili Avital than I do except that she is brunette like Mili Avital and I have fair hair) writes excellent dialogue and genuine relationships which is often tricky. And although I was extremely sleepy and I knew I would be losing an hour today, damn Daylight Savings Time, I nevertheless stayed up late and finished it in one sitting. With, in the interests of full disclosure, some getting up and down for water and the bathroom and to brush my teeth and to check Woot and PostSecret. I wasn’t wild about the last chapter – it seemed unconnected with the rest of the book, how suddenly we were leaping through enormous dollops of time in the narrator’s life and all kinds of shit happened in the intervening years, and – it was a bit jolting, and I thought, really, it could have been handled more smoothly.
But overall a thoroughly good book. If I knew any teenage girls I would give them my copy.
Oh, hey, I do know a teenage girl. Maybe I’ll give her my copy.