Monday, December 27, 2010

A Love Letter to NYC

Hello. *waving arms frantically* Today, I am going to be reviewing Susane Colasanti's So Much Closer, a young adult novel that will be released May 3, 2011.

This was my first Susane Colasanti book. I had heard of her before - she's a well-known YA author, and I had heard flattering things about her before. This book didn't seem that great to me.

Don't get me wrong - it wasn't that bad, either. It was somewhere in the middle.

The story is narrated by this girl named Brooke who's super smart - kind of. By super smart, I mean that she's really great at picking up concepts. She can do homework at the drop of a hat, without really trying. So she's a genius.

But she's a genius who does really, really stupid things - like intentionally get mediocre grades so that she'll "fit in." There's also some half-assed bullshit excuse for her reserved attitude - that when you get close to a guy, he dumps you. The backstory for that isn't fleshed out, but b/c the attitude towards the reader is somewhat reserved, as well, we don't really feel much impact from the few lines to such effect that Brooke tells us.

She doesn't have life figured out, and that's okay - she's in high school. Some people never figure their life out. It happens.

What's not so okay is that, at the beginning of the story, she lives in New Jersey with her bitter, single mother. & near the beginning of the story, she moves to New York City with the father she hasn't spoken to since he left her mom... because she's got a crush on a guy who has to move to New York b/c his dad got relocated.


You're a fucking genius who has been in a not-s0-healthy relationship before, and you think it's totally okay to move to a new city for a guy who barely knows you exist?

So it's kind of like the TV show "Felicity," but on cocaine, b/c this chick is in high school, and like that freaky obsessive chick in Twilight that everyone likes - what's her name? Bellows?


Because protagonist Brooke is so freakin' pretty & has that stand-off attitude, of course, everyone loves her. & she does succeed in getting her supposed "soulmate" whom she hardly knows to notice & date her.

So the novel involves finding herself, figuring out what she wants from life & that it was completely retarded for her NOT to take advantage of her intelligence to help her get to where she wants to be.

But mostly, the novel feels like a large love letter to the city of New York. There are descriptions of what parts of New York look like & how cool it is. Descriptions of why New York is obviously SO much better than New Jersey. The book is dedicated to the city of New York, because the author loves it & so created a character to portray that love.

The novel is a quick read, and if you don't get easily annoyed with the protagonist when he or she is a dumb ass, go ahead & give it a try. Otherwise, I recommend you pass on reading So Much Closer.

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