Monday, September 09, 2013

Mini-Review: Shug

Annemarie Wilcox, or Shug as her family calls her, is beginning to think there's nothing worse than being twelve. She's too tall, too freckled, and way too flat-chested. Shug is sure that there's not one good or amazing thing about her. And now she has to start junior high, where the friends she counts most dear aren't acting so dear anymore -- especially Mark, the boy she's known her whole life through. Life is growing up all around her, and all Shug wants is for things to be like they used to be. How is a person supposed to prepare for what happens tomorrow when there's just no figuring out today?

Author: Jenny Han
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Pages: 247
Date of Publication: August 6th 2006
Source: Bought
Goodreads | Amazon

I bought this book in a second-hand shop, having loved Han's The Summer I Turned Pretty series. I was disappointed with this one, for quite a few reasons!

The basic start didn't stop me, as I expected it: it's written from a 12 year old's perspective and most 12 year olds aren't like me (weren't, it having been my birthday a few days ago)! I expected basic language and typical "tweeness". But when the idea and determinism of "love" by the second page made me feel suffocated, almost, by the fact that it was only the first chapter, and this girl was twelve!

I let that slide, due to the fact that, as I said before, this book is from a 12 year old's perspective. Some girls are like that! What really then annoyed me if how self-conscious and almost vain this girl was; she looked at everyone's looks like you had to be pretty at twelve, and she was always on about looks! The book contained too many stereotypes, too.

I think if, as a character, Shug was older, I wouldn't have been as deterred. The fact that she was "in-love" at the age of twelve, and so funny about looks, made me quite uncomfortable. At 12, me and my friends are/were only starting to wear make-up, if any, and notice boys! We certainly weren't anything like that. Shug was also dealing with various issues at home, one of the slightly positive things, which made me think. I had lots of issues like this last year, but not the same. Shug was dealing with LGBT, divorce/arguments and alcoholics! The perspective of her, as a 12 year old, was quite strange.

I liked Elaine as a character. She was upfront, nice and liked to be different! I kind of wish we had a least one chapter from her, to see her perspective on the self-consciousness and almost obsession of her friend.

I was really sorry to have disliked this book. There were a few good bits, but they just didn't overlap the foolish love and fact that Shug was just too young a character.

Charli x

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