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A Reader of Fictions: I Kissed a Girl - Katy Perry

A Reader of Fictions

Book Reviews for Just About Every Kind of Book

Sunday, August 29, 2010

I Kissed a Girl - Katy Perry

Wildthorn

Author: Jane Eagland
Genre: historical fiction, young adult
Pages: 349
ARC Obtained From: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt via netgalley.com

Brief Summary:
Louisa Cosgrove, a British girl with a large nose wants nothing more than to be a doctor. Unfortunately, very few people support girls as doctors in her day and age. In fact, they sometimes have girls like her, ones who want silly things like independence, shut up in mental institutions, because, if you do not want a man to tell you what to do all the time, you must be insane. Louisa's life in that time period is made no easier by her being in love with her cousin either, her female cousin (they were totally okay with male and female cousins hooking up).

Review:
Wildthorn is not an ideal choice for those in search of happy fun times all the way through, but definitely an interesting topic not much touched on in teen literature. The first half of the novel switches between Louisa's experiences in the mental institution and her memories of her life and how she ended up there. Louisa is very sympathetic for a modern audience. The portrayal of the mental institution clearly reveals the horridness of that setup. Troublesome women truly were shunted off into these institutions and they could do nothing to escape. Most poignant is the impossibility of proving one's sanity. How do you convince people that you are not crazy when they keep calling you by a name that is not your own?

The lesbian angle was interesting too. Finding LGBT fiction for teens can be difficult; I took a course on young adult resources and in the week on this topic, we had no books about lesbians. This book fills a gap in teen literature and does quite a good job of it. Eagland does not shy away from the topic, nor does she overdo it. The story manages to be sweet and serious, a solid, slightly more deep than average teen read. It also has a beautiful cover!

Recommended if you like Sarah Waters, since this seems much like a teen version of Fingersmith.

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7 Comments:

Blogger Heidi said...

Julie Anne Peters writes a LGBT young adult books that are really good. You should check her out. I've read most of her books and so have my kids, they are really well done. One of my favorites is Luna about a boy who is transgender and his relationship with his parents and sister.

August 29, 2010 at 1:54 PM  
Blogger Christina said...

I added a couple of Peters' books to my to read shelf. I've run across her before and she did look interesting (pretty covers). I think it's a shame how lgbt fiction is remotely mainstream. Have you read Will Grayson, Will Grayson? It's fantastic!

August 29, 2010 at 2:50 PM  
Blogger Heidi said...

Did you mean that lgbt fiction isn't remotely mainstream? There are a few that are mainstream but very very few. I haven't read the book you suggested but I just looked it up and I love John Green so I'm putting it on my "to read list along with Wildthorne! Thanks again for the recommendation.

August 30, 2010 at 10:28 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

What I meant and didn't manage to say was that there really ought to be more. The current fiction available is not reflective of the actual teenage population. In my Young Adult Resources and Services class, we had a week that was supposed to be about lgbt fiction,but really it wasn't. The only lesbians in any of the books we read were in Dairy Queen, and the main character did not like her friend any more once she came out. It was a terrible book.

August 30, 2010 at 10:42 AM  
Blogger E.J. Stevens said...

Great review! I had noticed the gorgeous cover but didn't know what this book was about. Adding to my tbr list. :)

xx,
E.J
From the Shadows

August 30, 2010 at 6:26 PM  
Blogger Heidi said...

Here are a few good ya lgbt authors:
Brent Hartinger author of the Geography Club
Alex Sanchez author of Rainbow Boys
Perry Moore by Hero
Lauren Myracle by Kissing Kate

August 30, 2010 at 9:21 PM  
Blogger Christina said...

I will definitely check those out!

August 31, 2010 at 10:26 AM  

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