After meaning to do so for years, I have finally read Laurie Halse Anderson’s Wintergirls.
It was worth the wait.
I am one of very few people who, while considering Speak well written, did not much enjoy reading the book.
To be honest, I would prefer to discuss what I liked about Wintergirls as opposed to what I didn’t about it’s more famous sibling. Therefore:
1. I often felt disconnected from the protagonist.
I know, this description probably does not, at first, sound like a good thing about a novel. But it is. A large part of the reason that Lia is so controlling about what does (or more often, does not) go into her body is because life is overwhelming and painful. By focusing on suppressing one of life’s necessities, Lia is able to block out the world around her… As such, it is both appropriate and a sign of her skill that Anderson allows is a glimpse into this character, helps us to feel sympathetic and worry for her, when at the same time, we feel a sense of “otherness” from her that the character is pushing out into the world.
2. The language
Akin to A Clockwork Orange or Inherent Vice, Anderson creates Lia’s own language in this book. All of the words she uses are English, yet the manner in which she uses those words turns her phrases into more of that exotic, disorienting, Wintergirl-ness
3. The story, while fairly simple at its’ core, is still intriguing and unpredictable.
I was completely unsure how this story was going to end, and the ending did not disappoint. #winwin
I know not everyone likes young adult literature, and as such, would not say that this novel is for everyone. If you do like YA, however, this YA novel is very well done, and I highly recommend.