14 January 2012

The Difference Between You and Me; Madeleine George

The Difference Between You and MeThe Difference Between You and Me by Madeleine George
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I knew each of the three types these girls (Jesse, Esther and Emily) exemplify when I was in high school and things haven't changed in the 30+ years since then.  They're very clearly defined and feel very real.  It was easy to understand Jesse's Out/Proud/Activist outlook, to roll my eyes over Emily's Perfect Girl/Closet Case actions and smile at Esther's Action Oriented Passion.  And that should have been enough - but usually girls in high school grow and change, and except for a little bit at the end, there was no real change in any of them.

Another problem for me was the ancillary characters/background, which felt a bit like tossing in the kitchen sink.  It felt like restraint when Emily didn't have an eating disorder on top of it all; I actually groaned out loud when we walked into Esther's house.  Finally, while I enjoyed the interior monologues for Emily and Esther, it was odd that we got a more distant view of Jesse.
So why three stars and not two?  Because I really did believe in the characters, despite the outside stuff.**

ARC provided by publisher.

** (note, I'm not going to get into the librarian quibble about a public library using LC and not DDC because the vast majority of readers aren't going to notice)

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