Member Profile

Name : Chelsea N.

My Reviews

Book Club Recommended
Dark, Dramatic, Difficult
Wuthering Heights: Beautiful, but NOT a Romance

I picked it up to try and discover why people touted it as a "classic romance." Turns out - it's NOT. If anything it is a cautionary tale. Themes of pride, forgiveness, the power of kindness, and the differences between the many types of love are rampant through the dramatic and often frustrating actions of the characters. The fact that Emily doesn't actually focus on the relationship between Heathcliff and Catherine was the first major tip-off that there was WAY more to the story than just two "star-crossed lovers." Pfftt, star crossed my eye! A careful reading can reveal the depth of this amazing cautionary tale. It was gratifying to see that Hareton was a foil for Heathcliff! Both have a similar upbringing but redemption comes to he who chooses it. I LOVE Nelly! The prose is beautiful and haunting - though Joseph's thick Yorkshire accent is difficult to understand unless you read it out loud. And although there are similar "convenient plot" issues as those found in Jane Eyre, I found the overall reading experience to be well worth it! I learned a lot, found great monologues for theater and quite a few quotes I'll use again and again.

Book Club Recommended
Interesting, Dramatic, Brilliant
Frankenstein - less human than his creation

I read this on the recommendation of my husband. The first few chapters were boring, confusing, and I quickly came to dislike both Walton and Victor. But then the monster spoke - and I began to understand the true meaning of horror. Not the blood and guts kind. The "an intense feeling of fear, shock, or disgust" kind. I can't even tell you how often while reading this short book that my mouth hung open in shock or I exclaimed, "Ugh, I hate him!"
There was so much insight and beauty in the writing; the difference between Victor and his creation was so clear that I can't help but marvel that it was written by a 19 year old. For these reasons and more, I enjoyed it and will recommend it to others.

Book Club Recommended
Insightful, Dramatic
It's kind of a funny story - and kind of deep.

I read this based on a recommendation from my daughter's English Teacher and had very little idea what I was in for. Reading the back blurb: I would never have picked it up. But I'm SO GLAD I DID.

The back of the book sets the tone pretty well, in that it uses some inflammatory terms that should scare off those who would find the book too real/too raw/too much.

Because let me be clear: It is real, raw, and a lot.

The book has 13-15 year olds smoking pot, having an active sexual life, drinking, partying, dealing drugs, lying to parents, and cutting. It is also very open about how often the main character masturbates and engages in pornography/pornographic dreams. He objectifies women and stress vomits regularly. He has what I would call a "Pippin Complex," where his desire to be special and remembered becomes destructive.

It's told from a young male perspective, which might be difficult for some teenage girls to stomach, especially the talk of what he does in the bathroom, how he physically reacts to girls, etc.
It's a bit like reading Ender's Game, but with the bodily functions more of a focus because I think the author is validating that hormones play a part in the character's depression.

And all of that is a brilliant set up for his spiral into depression/anxiety, near suicide, and his incredible growth. It doesn't BLAME any one thing, but lets the reader discover cause and effect with the character.
I found the author to be careful of suicide ideation; relating it without glorifying it - which is a far cry better than what kids get when they watch 13 Reasons Why.

There are three pretty strong sensual scenes where the author pulls a few punches, but not many. I believe some kids WILL be uncomfortable reading that. I can't hate on the scenes, though, because each one serves an important role in the character's growth - especially in respecting women and discovering that respect has more to do with love than lust does.

There are some parts that were hard to read for a number of reasons, and other parts that were so gloriously enlightening - awakenings I will never forget - that I wish everyone could read it!

I truly believe that for a junior high age group it's a book that should be read WITH DISCUSSION, not just in a vacuum. Although I bet that for a few kids: reading it alone would be exactly what they needed to carry on.

Multiple times in the book, I just cried and cried, and didn't understand for like 20 more pages why it was affecting me so much. It's a well written book with an incredible message, for sure!

An easy read, but difficult to put down.

Remember me

Now serving over 80,000 book clubs & ready to welcome yours. Join us and get the Top Book Club Picks of 2022 (so far).


Get free weekly updates on top club picks, book giveaways, author events and more
Please wait...