This week I stared by reading Page by Paige, by Laura Lee Gulledge. Paige is your typical teenage girl – except her passion is for sketching. Paige struggles through a year with her sketchbook, discovering herself and following her grandmother’s rules for drawing.
This book has AMAZING illustrations. I also really like how Gulledge allows us to see the “inside her head” Paige, and how that differs from the “outside her head” Paige. I really felt like Gulledge was speaking to me and illustrating my life! Paige is not the little girl her parents knew, blossoms as she first finds friends, then a boyfriend, then her friends again. Slowly, Gulledge shows the inside and outside Paige melting together in a beautiful ode to growing up.
Some of my YA Lit classmates also read this book, and it is interesting to see which “rules” they posted to Twitter. Check it out over there….then read Page by Paige and share your favorite.
I then jumped into the world of Eleanor & Park, by Rainbow Rowell. Talk about amazingly complex characters!
Eleanor and Park are high school kids who end up sitting by each other on the bus. They become unlikely friends and end up falling in love. Yet neither has a perfect life. Park – the seemingly perfect Asian boy – has an uneasy relationship with his father, and hates many of his classmates/neighbors. Eleanor – brilliant and new to school – has been allowed to move home to a tiny house with her abusive stepfather, and her mother and siblings.
Rowell did an excellent job in alternating perspectives and getting us inside their heads. Park doesn’t have it all together, and neither does Eleanor. They fall in love and push each other away. They are complex, struggle with things that are beyond their shared circumstances, and try to survive.
I love how the cover symbolizes their shared existence (the “&” is the tangled headphone cords – they both love music) and the way they need each other to survive. The cover, and their world, only exists when they are sharing the music.
Well, that’s my reading for the week. What did you read this week? What do you think I should read next? Let’s talk below….