Last year for Christmas, my twelve year old niece told me about her favorite books. The one that she was loving the most at the time was called Fever, by Laura Halse Anderson. Then, this past fall, I went home to visit, and my niece was re-reading it. I wrote down the author’s name and looked her up. That is how I learned about this book, her best selling novel.
This is another young adult novel, which I am loving lately (see my review of The Hunger Games here). This one is intense though. It is written from the perspective of a 15 year old who is just starting high school, after a summer that should have been the “best in her life”. Something happens that summer that changes her from a happy-go lucky kid into a brooding, depressed young adult. She grows up fast, lets put it that way.
Her friends hate her, she is getting terrible grades, and she isn’t getting along with her parents. Then the art teacher at school, without knowing it, helps her find her voice. The depressed schtick never gets old or trite, like it can sometimes start to feel in a lot of novels. This is a girl you can really relate to, whether you sympathize or empathize with her situation. Her pain jumps out of the pages, and I found myself wanting to reach out to her while slapping her friends and parents (and the ubiquitous shitty teacher).
Get this book and read it today. I finished it in about 2 days. And then I saw the movie.
I’m not a fan of Kristin Stewart (and by “not a fan” I mean that she ruined the Twilight series for me; books that I LOVED). That said, I loved this movie. Because it should go without saying which is better, I won’t compare the book and the movie, but I will say that both are worth the time. Stewart is actually believable in this role, and I can almost see why the Twilight casting director picked her (too bad her skills seemed to have evaporated since this movie was made).
Moral of the story? Get the book and the movie. Read the book first, and then make some popcorn and watch a really good movie.