ANOTHER REVIEW OF ‘DESSI’S ROMANCE FROM “CREATE A KID’S BOOK”.
by Virginia Lower ([[email protected]]
I strongly recommend Virginia’s monthly newsletter for all aspiring writers.
She is also an excellent manuscript assessor.
‘What is the best way to punish a so-called “close friend”?’
Emma and Dessi have been best friends forever, as have their mothers. Nothing comes between them until ‘schoolies week’ when ‘love’ hits Dessi for the first time – then disaster! All the problems and worries of the end of Year 12 are here: jobs (Emma works in ‘the supermarket-from-hell’), results, tertiary applications and ‘schoolies week’ at Surfers. But alas, poor Dessi has also just acquired a badly broken ankle.
This is a teen romance told in two alternating voices. Emma is the artistic one, and she’s sure her folio from Year 12 Art will get her into a course she’ll love – or she hopes so. She spends quite a bit of time throughout the story sketching her environs, or thinking how she could mix a particular colour she encounters (especially, it must be said, among her friends’ faces, who are going right over the top with alcohol and drugs, in celebrating schoolies week.)
Dessi is the literary one. She writes flawless poetry. This is one of the strengths of the book – unlike many stories in which a young person is a poet of some renown, but the poetry is very weak – here the short simple free verse poems are a delight.
Love is a leach, a bloodsucking vampire
whose sole aim is to turn you into a babbling idiot
with sightless eyes, deaf ears, and helpless limbs.
The story is a powerful picture of people at the end of their school years and the beginning of their lives in romance, work and tertiary study. It is gripping reading, as the relationships get more and more complicated, and we yearn for their resolution.