Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Like We Care, by Tom Matthews

A story of two high school students, Todd and Joel, who get themselves in the midst of a consumer revolt against the obnoxious cable music station R2R and its attempts to shove commercialized rock music down their throats. What starts as a boycott of convenience stores blooms into an attempt to affect grassroots politics and destroy commercial rap.

This rather preachy book suffers from two major flaws: written by a guy it has a male writer's typical penchant for violence and unnecessary roughness (and a consequent lack of interest in emotions, feelings, and motivations). It's second flaw is that it's written by a guy who believes that HIS generation's music was less commercialized than the current generation (and hence, more "authentic"). This is a good lesson for teens to read (if they don't realize the extent to which they have been had, they will), but for a read, it comes off pretty thin and pretentious. And the novel itself bears the hype stamp of a commercialized YA book industry that is only slightly on higher ground than the industries that the book does attack.

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