Friday, February 03, 2017

Nice Girls Endure, by Chris Struyk-Bonn

Chelsea is very self-conscious about her weight.  She's always been a big girl (and developing a bust in third grade didn't help matters).  The story pretty much traces her daily humiliations.  These take a small turn to the better as she befriends the energetic and upbeat Melody and a turn for the worse when she is assaulted and humiliated by a class bully.  Thanks to some pep talk from her friends and some chemical intervention, she pulls through her challenges.

The story has lots of lovely details (vignettes and observations that make or break a YA novel) but I was frustrated by the limp plotting.  I wanted a climactic moment and imagined what it would contain (a film premier, winning a spot on the choir, dealing with the brats next door, confronting the bully, telling off her mother, etc.) and none of that happened.  It is so frustrating to be set up for a moment of redemption that never really comes!  In fairness, Chelsea has some minor inner growth, but it wasn't enough for me. I needed to see it resolve some of her issues.

No comments: