Sunday 27 February 2011

Book Review - My So-Called Life

Title: My So-Called Life: The Tragically Normal Diary of Rachel Riley
Autor: Joanna Nadin
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN-13: 978-0192755261

Rachel Riley is the offspring of a depressingly unbroken home. Her mum and dad refuse to let her have a mobile phone, and have banned Ribena (too purple) and Eastenders (too common); her seven-year-old brother buys giant Des Lynam cut-outs and Will Young dolls from ebay and talks in Elvish; and the adopted dog eats her Pride and Prejudice boxed collection. It is time to change things. Rachel resolves that this year she will become tragic, literary and interesting - and will win the heart of Justin, the lead guitarist from Certain Death, along the way.

My Review
I picked this up because it sounded quite funny, a bit like the Louise Rennison books, however it sat on my shelf for ages and i didn't seem to get round to it. I took it with me on holiday as thought it looked like a nice light easy read that i could dip in and out of. I didn't get very far into it whilst away, but finished it today at home.
Rachel Riley is given a diary as a Christmas present and decides to record her boringly normal life throughout the year. From disappointing presents, to boy trouble and strict parents, Rachel's life seems to be like anyone else, she wishes for something more, a bit of excitement.
The book is divided by each month of the year and then by each days entry. The entries are all pretty short 1 to 2 paragraphs. and it is well written, it flows well and makes it easier to read. Didn't take me long at allRachel has quite a witty sense of humour and there were moments that i laughed out loud, but i would also say that i think in places it is un-necessarily rude. Her best friends mum is a sex therapist and this seems to fascinate Rachel, and she makes a lot of references to things to do with sex. I would say it wasn't suitable for younger readers, over 15 at least to read it. 

There are a whole host of characters in this book and Rachel's descriptions are funny. Her grandpa is a right character and lovable, her brother is odd and her aunt is loopy, her mother is a control freak and adds many items to her 'banned' list, some of which seem a bit overboard. I can't decide whether i liked this book or not, it was an enjoyable read but some moments did make me cringe and there was a bit too much sexual reference for me, but then again, I do want to know what happens next for all the characters so i still want to read the next books in the series. It has definitely got me on the fence.
As a quick read that doesn't require much brain power, I am glad I read it, but don't think i would ever re-read it. 

My Rating
I would give this book 4/10, OK but not great,    

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