Can't Stop Reading

Lucky for me I get a hefty discount at work, because I just can't seem to stop myself!

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Wow, its amazing how much you DON'T read when the weather is gorgeous, isn't it? Last night I went lake swimming, and then today I went on a long bike ride with my friend Robyn. Fortunately for you all, I squeezed Grist in there somewhere.

Grist is Heather Waldorf's second YA novel. It's about Charlena (aka Charles, Charlie, Char) and her crazy, crazy family. Her father is dating a woman with three teenaged sons, and they're going to spend the summer in Toronto, while dad Mike teaches an accounting course. Charlie's best and only friend Sam has moved to Australia with his family (after an exceedingly awkward scene in which Charlie confesses her love for him). And her creative writing teacher has just suffered from a serious heart attack, which Charlie is convinced is due to her terrible writing. So when her Grams invites her to spend the summer up at Lake Ringrose, Charlie accepts.

Lake Ringrose is in the middle of nowhere. The closest town is Wawa, which, if you've ever been there, you'll know isn't saying much. One of the few teenagers out there is Kerry, who is all screwed up over a snowmobiling accident the previous winter. The accident caused his father's death, and seriously injured Kerry, forcing him to spend many months down in Sault Ste. Marie doing rehab. Now he's back at Ringrose and ready to cause more trouble. Even though Grams specifically warns Charlie to stay away from Kerry, they end up hooking up and falling in love. Which is not all that exciting until the Grams' reason is revealed. Which will totally spoil the book, so I'm not gonna tell you. Haha!

So. The story is maybe a little over the top dramatic, but I definitely did not see the big twist coming. Waldorf's writing is good enough to carry the story, though the occasional descent into over-writing does occur. But maybe that's in reference to Charlie's ambition to be a writer. I have yet to meet a teenager that doesn't over-write.

So, all in all, a good story, a likeable character, a good book. However, Red Deer Press seems to be under the impression that this book doesn't exist, so I can't show you the cover. That's unfortunate, because I think it’s a really nice example of a YA cover with a picture of a character that actually works.

Grist by Heather Waldorf
ISBN 0889953473
176 pages


  • At 5:17 AM, Anonymous Maggie said…

    You're right, it is a good cover! I found one on the McNally Robinson website -

  • At 10:17 AM, Blogger bookstore girl said…

    Thanks Maggie! I will try and get that up there.


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