Saturday, August 06, 2005

The Boyfriend List, by E. Lockhart

The opens with Ruby Oliver seeing a therapist for a series of panic attacks. As part of her therapy, she assembles the "Boyfriend List" which outlines all of the boys that she's had relationships (of one sort or another) with, and which serves as a framework to describe the reason for her fall from grace and the debacle that was the only one of the 15 (#13) that she really cared about.

This is a well-written and heartbreaking story of the way that human relationships ebb and flow. And while those relationships seem more volatile when you're 15, there's very little about Lockhart's writing that isn't true about relationships through life. Add her observations about parents and the way that they mess you up, and this is really an on-the-mark book.

There is an annoying artifice in the book of using footnotes throughout. This is cute and attempts to capture some of the asides that don't quite fit in the narrative, but like sidebars, they are very hard to read and can get quite distracting.

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