Friday, November 30, 2012

Review: Forever... by Judy Blume

 Summary: Katherine and Michael meet at a New Year's Eve party. They're attracted to each other, they grow to love each other. And once they've decided their love is forever, they make love.

It's the beginning of an intense and exclusive relationship, with a future all planned. Until Katherine's parents insist that she and Michael put their love to the test with a summer apart...

Hey everyone! Kim here. I apologize for not posting lately; school has left me with very little reading time, and with finals coming up I doubt it'll change. This week, however, I managed to squeeze in this little romance novel by Judy Blume titled Forever.... Here's my opinion on it.

Review: I'm not one for romance novels; I'd much rather curl up on a couch with a good mystery or action book. But this one sounded interesting,  so I figured I would give it a shot. I remember reading a few of Judy Blume's Fudge books in second or third grade, but I've never read her young adult books, and I was very disappointed. The only good thing about this book is the story. I'm not a fan of the writing at all; I swear to god, I've never seem so many ellipses in my life. Each time the character spoke, it seemed like they took a three second pause between every phrase. Here's an excerpt to show you what I mean:
"It's about the summer..." I waited for some reaction from him. "You parents...they arranged..." I sat up. "Oh God...I don't know how to tell you this..."
He opened his eyes and sat up too. "Just say it, Kath. Whatever it is...just say it."
"I've got to go to New Hampshire for seven father got me this job at Jamie's camp...they needed an assistant tennis counselor...I said no...I told them to forget it...but they said I have no choice...they're making me go, Michael...but I figure you could drive up at least once, maybe twice, because I'm sure I'll get some time off...and..." I looked over at him. "I know what you're thinking," I said. "that I'm eighteen...that I should be more independent...I should have asserted myself...but, I don't know..." I stopped for a minute. "Say something, will you..."
That's what happened every single time a character spoke. It was nearly unbearable.

On top of the writing, the characters were horribly underdeveloped, as were the sub-plots. Blume covers many sensitive topics in this book, from sex to suicide to sexual orientation to pregnancy, but they were handled very poorly. There was little to no development in subplots that had a lot of potential, and the characters are one-dimensional and unrelatable. I didn't like Katherine that much; she seemed like the stereotypical jealous girlfriend. Pretty early in the story, Katherine tells the reader that her decision for college basically depended on where Michael decides to go, and just...ugh. There are very few things I hate more than clingy girls who let their boyfriends decide their future, especially when there are great opportunities out there for them.

As you read in the summary, this book is about two teenagers, Katherine and Michael, who fall in love and decide to start having sex. Katherine asks Michael to take it slow at first because she wants to wait until she's sure she is ready. However, after a chapter or two, Michael subtly pressures her into it. The sex scenes are pretty graphic (and just plain weird) for a YA book; I was shocked and a little uncomfortable at times. As I kept reading, it began to seem like their relationship was more about sex than love. 

If you're undecided as to whether you want to read this book or not, I'd say don't waste your time. There are more cons than pros to this novel.