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A girly book
Girls in Love - Jacqueline Wilson
Member Name: bettyboop2002
Girls in Love - Jacqueline Wilson
Advantages: A book teenage girls would love
Disadvantages: Aimed at a specific group of readers
Girls In Love by Jacqueline Wilson is one of four of her books on the BBC top 100 books list I am reading.
It is the first in a series of 'girls' books by the author. The cover is bright with blocks of neon green, pink and orange blocks.
The rrp for this book is 5.99.
The book is about a 14 year old girl called Ellie. It is written as if by her and is done well, you could imagine a 14 year old acting and saying the things in the book.
Ellie has a bit of a thing about the number 9. There are a few of her lists in the books, all containing 9 items on the lists such as her list of resolutions and favourite famous people.
Ellie lives with her dad, step mum and their child - her little brother who she calls egg. Ellie feels left out and that her little brother gets all the attention.
Her best friends are Magda and Nadine. The three girls are about to start a new year of school at the start of the book and all Ellie wants is to find a boyfriend. When her friends get boyfriends she wants one even more and decides to make one up.
As the book goes along we read about Ellie's insecurities, her crush on a boy she passes on the way to school and the disappointment at having someone like her who she doesn't feel the same about. So basically, all the usually young teenager stuff.
We follow Ellie through school, her first party, her fall outs with friends and her home life. It is an interesting read and it keeps you interested because you want to find out if she achieves her ultimate goal of finding a boyfriend, and if her friends' stay with theirs.
The only negative I find with this book is that it is aimed at a limited number of readers. I found the book in the teenage section of my local library, most of the Jacqueline Wilson books are in the childrens section but this one isn't for children. As the title 'girls in love' would suggest, it is about relationships, messy, young, first relationships. The book mentions snogging a lot, love bites and several references to sex. There is nothing too crude in it at all but I think those younger than teenage years would find it confusing, gross and most probably uninteresting. Older teenagers will have heard, seen and maybe even done 'it' before so would find the book too young so the age range is very limited and I don't think boys would like the book.
I thought the characters in the book, who were 13 and 14, seemed a bit young for the subject matter and references to sex but I suppose that's just modern times. It is actually quite good at highlighting the pressure young girls feel under in relationships (especially with the older teenage boys). It is also good because it includes Ellie mentioning her body issues, her feelings towards her step-mum and her jealousy of her younger brother. All issues which are the norm these days and readers in the same position will feel they are not alone. Considering the book was first published in 1997 it is quite ahead of many others of it's time where the characters look perfect and have perfect families and lives.
I thought the book was very good, not her best, but good all the same and I'm sure girls of the right age bracket would love it. The illustrations by Nick Sharatt fit in really well with the style of the book being little sketches and cartoons dotted around to make the pages more interesting. The lists and love letters in the book break the pages up a bit and I think younger readers would find the style of writing fun to read.
Summary: A good book but it wouldn't make it into my top 100!
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