stapsreads: 'The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who cannot read them' (Default)
Annie On My Mind for the nineties. Same author, and covering the same sort of themes - coming out at high school, experience of homophobia, vocation to the arts. The school is co-educational now, and the setting has moved from the city to the back of beyond, but there are definite echoes of Garden's earlier (and more famous?) work.

Which is not to say that this was not an enjoyable book in its own right. It contained many of my favourite tropes: coming out (to oneself, particularly), platonic female/male friendship, school... I particularly loved the theatrical theme (even if the parallels with The Crucible made me roll my eyes a bit). In places I found it too painful to read much at a time, but it's ultimately a moving, hopeful novel.
stapsreads: 'The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who cannot read them' (Default)
The life and loves of Carrie Bradshaw before the 'Sex and the City' years. I should admit now, since it will probably soon become obvious, that I was only briefly acquainted with 'Sex and the City', since there were only a couple of years during which two vital conditions were fulfilled: a) my having a telly; and b) the show being on it. Consequently, I only occasionally remembered that I was reading the prequel to 'Sex and the City'; most of the time it just felt like a common or garden high school novel. The fact that in my head Sarah Jessica Parker sprung into being fully formed at the age of about 35 isn't really helping, either.

None of which is intended to say that I didn't enjoy this. I did. It was a very readable piece of teen fiction - often amusing, sometimes profound, and only occasionally didactic. In fact, it worked beautifully as a standalone novel, with one glorious nod to the future. (I'll be honest: I saw it coming - or something like it coming, anyway - but that doesn't make it any less glorious, damn it!)

http://www.bookcrossing.com/journal/9730739
stapsreads: 'The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who cannot read them' (Default)
Two books in one. A large chunk keeps falling out of the Highland Twins part of the book, but so far the Chalet School at War remains intact.

Aside from alarums and excursions of the more than usually sensational sort, there being Nazis, U-boats and spies to contend with, not to mention moving the entire establishment, and Welsh and Gaelic being added to the polyglot cornucopia, this is pretty much Chalet School business as usual. Just a little more so. A nice unchallenging read (apart from suppressing my murderous inclinations towards Joey, that is...)

http://www.bookcrossing.com/journal/9881025/
stapsreads: 'The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who cannot read them' (Default)
A relatively late Abbey Girls book, and exceedingly confusing because of the vast number of a) twins; b) people with names beginning with J; c) Queens of the Hamlet Club. It always amuses me how the longer school story series end up with very little school at all. I like the Abbey stories, though, baffling as they are, because they are very generous-spirited with it, even if one is not into all the folk dancing.

http://www.bookcrossing.com/journal/8263834/
stapsreads: 'The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who cannot read them' (Default)
This is the Egerton Hall trilogy stuck together in one volume. Reading before sending on to a bookcrosser who is, according to her profile, very fond of fairy tales and fairy tales retold. These ones I loved when I was in my teens, though it was a while before I managed to track down Pictures of the Night. Still love them, though find the men a little feeble these days - not too much of a problem though, seeing as how most of the focus is on Megan, Alice and Bella, as it should be.

The stories are essentially played straight, but with such swinging sixties fervour and vibe, and so cleverly done, that they're a real joy to read. I don't mind parting with this volume, though; I think I prefer them separate.

http://www.bookcrossing.com/journal/10056772

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