Monday, December 15, 2008

Girl, 28, Catching Up on Reviewing, (Slowly) Going Insane

I am from the midwest. While winter is not my favorite season, I do enjoy it. DC winter makes me sad. It's cold enough to be annoying, but not cold enough to actually be cold. It's gray and rainy. There's no snow. :(

Today, I didn't wear my jacket when I went out to dinner, because it would have been too hot. IT IS WINTER! I NEED TO WEAR A JACKET!

Anyway, books. Today I'm reviewing the rest of the Girl... series by Sue Limb. It's hard to review a series book without some spoilers for previous books. I apologize, but I don't have the skillz to do it any other way.

Girl, (Nearly) 16: Absolute Torture Sue Limb

Jess and Fred are in luuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuurve, but tragedy awaits them—mainly in the form that Jess is going on holiday with Granny and Mum. How will insecure Jess handle being torn away from Fred for weeks?! Even if Jess is looking forward to finally visiting her Dad at his place, how can she leave Fred with the bevy of beauties inevitably surrounding him?

So, I was a little disconcerted with the ending of Girl 15, Charming but Insane. I mean, Jess’s best friend Flora, really likes Fred. But at the end of the book, Jess and Fred hook up. What about Flora? Even if you like a boy, if your best friend expresses interest first, he’s off limits until she says otherwise. I feel very strongly about this and was kinda pissed at Jess for not really thinking about Flora. Bad friend! (Plus, I was reading this after sunrise during the 24 hour readathon, so I was really mad.) Anyway, I thought there would be some friendship drama in the start of this book but Flora was over it (even though she had sulked about it for three days.)

Anyway, I really liked this one. Jess is insane and insecure and invents her own drama, but her voice is laugh-out-loud hysterical (she does want to be a comedienne when she grows up) A great addition to the funny Brit chick-lit scene—good for fans especially of Georgia Nicolson or Angelica Cookson Potts.

Girl, Going on 17: Pants on Fire Sue Limb

After their fantastic summer, school’s about to start. Sadly, this means a heart-breaking comedy of errors as Jess and Fred break up over pride and misunderstanding. To top it off, there’s a new teacher at school—one that hates Jess and her comedy. Things are so awful Jess keeps getting “sick” and keeps spinning outrageous tales to cover her absences.

Once again, Jess must lie in the bed of drama that she made. And! If she can get around annoying MacKenzie and the horrible Miss Thorn, there will be an end-of-term comedy show to end all comedy shows.

I think this is my favorite of the series. Jess’s drama is entirely invented, and entirely avoidable, but yet, entirely real and believable. Problems escalate when she doesn’t want to show vulnerability, and in her attempt to keep her life under control, it spins wildly out of it. Hysterical and full of heart.

Girl, Barely 15: Flirting for England Sue Limb

This is the prequel to the saga of Jess. In the term before Girl, 15, Charming, But Insane, before Fred, before lusting after Ben, before Granny moves in, a group of French exchange students is coming. Luckily, the student Jess is hosting sends a picture that shows him to be super-hott. Jess can’t wait. Too bad her French sucks. But, when Edouard arrives, he’s a small, little kid! With English skills to match Jess’s French ones. International romantic drama (and hilarity) ensues, culminating in a camping trip of comedicly epic proportions.

This is a well-done prequel—it sets up the first series perfectly, without everything pointing to things that fans of the series already know (like Gossip Girl: It Had to Be You does.) It’s also nice to see Jess completely insane, but not in relation to Fred—you know it’s just her.

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