Tag Archives: Susan Juby

The Fashion Committee — Susan Juby

29 Aug

 

Publisher: Penguin Random House
Released: May 23rd, 2017
Genre: YA contemp
Source: ARC from publisher

 

 

What if one contest could change the course of your entire life?

Charlie Dean is a style-obsessed girl who eats, sleeps, and breathes fashion.

John Thomas-Smith is a boy who forges metal sculptures in his garage and couldn’t care less about clothes.

Both are gunning for a scholarship to the private art high school that could make all their dreams come true. And whoever wins the fashion competition will win the scholarship.

From Goodreads

 

Susan Juby is one of those authors that I can always count on to deliver an engaging and amazing and awesome book. She has a way of dealing with serious issues with laughter and an honesty that can be brutal. She is also hands down one of the best writers of misfits and odd characters.

OMG these were interesting characters. And you know what? *SPOILER* They don’t fall in love!!!!!!! This is SOOOO refreshing and unexpected for the genre.

The format of the book is diary entries, and I just loved that. And Juby writes both Charlie Dean and John so differently. Both had very distinct voices and sometimes that’s hard to do.

Charlie Dean is such an optimist and the way she writes about some of the crap in her life so matter-of-factly is heartbreaking. She reminds me a lot of Rachel from Glee in season one. That whole the show must go on and I am always awesome attitude. John, on the other hand, is a bit of a pessimist despite the fact that his life is pretty good. The contrast between their attitudes and situations in life is my favorite part of the book.

This was a pretty unique book for the genre and I think everyone will enjoy it.

Alice, I Think by Susan Juby

18 May

Publisher: HarperCollins Canada
Released: June 5th, 2003
Genre: YA contempt
Bought at a second hand store with much sqeeing.

After her first counselor has a meltdown, Alice MacLeod and her new counselor decide that Alice’s horizons should be expanded. Enter Alice’s Life Goals List. It’s time to grow up, act her age, maybe even go back to high school after years of being taught at home. Alice is on the hunt for a look, a social life, a job, a boyfriend, and, most importantly, a half-decent haircut. But getting those things in Smithers, B.C., isn’t easy. Particularly if Irma of Irma’s Salon is in charge of the new look.

Sporting a new haircut that is reminiscent of a large construction helmet, Alice is attacked by marauding headbangers as she sits in the family station wagon in the parking lot of the Smithers Grocery Giant. Her mother comes to the rescue and the situation ends up in a brawl. An aging hippie chick who makes her children wear lead aprons in front of the computer, Alice’s mom is just one of the novel’s wonderful and wacky characters.

Alice, I Think is about that all-important good haircut, the one that has the potential to change your life. It is also about becoming who you want to be, on your own terms.

From HarperCollins Canada website

Okay, this book kicked ass. And I kicked mine for taking so long to read it. When another one of my favorite Canadian authors, Susin Nielsen, mentioned I should read it, well, I did. And I loved it.

I love that Alice is, well, a bit odd (okay A LOT odd) but doesn’t seem to notice. She marches to the beat of a very different drums and she’s okay with that.  She keeps trying to fit in, but just keeps missing the mark. From her new haircut to her amazing new style, she tries to make an impression and she does: it’s just not the right one.

I felt sorry for Alice, but at times I was also a bit envious of her. I mean, sure she was an outcast even among outcasts and the harder she tried the worst things became, but at the same time she didn’t seem to care a whole Hell of a lot. And she stayed true to herself as she tried again and again to tackle her list of life goals and turn things around.

This was a funny book, but I never once felt that I was laughing AT Alice. It was more that I was laughing at the situations she got herself into because the former teen in me could identify with her and sympathize with her.

I was very excited to discover that there are more Alice books. They are definitely on the top of my “must buy” list. Alice is a character that I want to spend some more time with, for sure.

*NOTE: While looking for another book I discovered I actually OWN a copy of Miss Smithers, the next Alice book. Color me excited!*

Dewey’s Readathon!!!!!

9 Apr

Yes, folks, despite my bad luck the last umpteen readathon, I’m taking part in Dewey’s Readathon today. My goal this year is to stay up as late as possible. I have sugary snacks, oodles of coffee and a husband who is willing to look after all our animals, including Rowlf, our 8 week old puppy. 🙂

I will probably be doing maybe two blog updates during the readathon, but will be tweeting my progress more often.

Well, I’m off to make my first cup of coffee and start in on Susan Juby’s Alice I Think.

Happy readathoning!