"Very much a not for me but maybe for you book"
Reading Level: Young Adult
Publication Date: July 2011
Keek’s life was totally perfect….Keek and her boyfriend just had their Worst Fight Ever; her best friend heinously betrayed her; her parents are divorcing; and her mom’s across the country caring for her newborn cousin, who may or may not make it home from the hospital. To top it all off, Keek’s got the plague. (Well, the chicken pox.) Now she’s holed up at her grandmother’s technologically barren house until further notice. Not quite the summer vacation Keek had in mind.With only an old typewriter and Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar for solace and guidance, Keek’s alone with her swirling thoughts. But one thing’s clear through her feverish haze—she’s got to figure out why things went wrong so she can make them right.(from Goodreads)
One thing that really made it hard for me to love this book was the fact that I really really didn't like Keek (short for Karina…?). Granted, she is having a pretty terrible summer but compared to some people in her immediate circle? Her problems aren't all that bad. The 'fights' she is having with her BFF and BF respectfully don't seem to add up to much. She's really sick but her grandmother is doing a fabulous job taking care of her and her parents? She does nothing to hold them accountable for their actions - she rather just whine about it all.
Another aspect of the story that didn't jive with me was Keek's obsession with The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath. I've never read this book, never wanted to and after reading And Then Things Fall Apart I really didn't want to. Keek quotes a ginormous amount of the book in her daily typewriter ramblings. Page after page of The Bell Jar this and The Bell Jar that and this reminds me of that time in the The Bell Jar.
I will own up to the fact that this connection Arlaina makes with Plath might be totally lost on me from a literary perspective. Keek's musings are obnoxious but they are also deep insights straight into the heart of who she is, much like Plath's are.
A final last point that I just flat out didn’t like was the sexual aspects of the book. I have no problem with sex in YA but I just didn't like Keek's sexuality. I know that's a strange thing to say but I don't know how else to explain it. I mean, she's only 15 and if her words are to be believed, she thinks about sex like 100% more then I ever did at that age. It was off putting at times.
And Then Things Fall Apart is very much written in diary type entries and narratives such as these aren't usually my favorite. I think in the end this it what really did it for me.
Very much a not for me but maybe for you book!
3 / 5 Stars