Wednesday, July 6, 2011
Mostly Good Girls
Simon Pulse, 2010
So I just looked up the publication info for this post but I'm really not surprised to see that it comes from Simon Pulse, an imprint that I associate with very funny conversational prose about contemporary high school experiences from a female point of view. And I love that!
Violet and her best friend Katie are undergoing their junior year at their exclusive expensive private girls school. Violet is shooting for the best year ever: in academics, in the literary journal she edits, in their friendship, and in boys, especially the dreamy Scott Walsh who both girls like. But things keep throwing that off. Katie gets a perfect score on the PSATs but doesn't tell Violet; Scott has a new girlfriend; the literary journal receives sub-par submissions. But it's Katie's rapid distancing from Violet that has her most flustered.
I really liked that most of this book focused on the friendship instead of boys. Yes, both girls like Scott but both girls also prioritize their friendship and this results in many fun passages. Watching them grow apart as Katie acted in inexplicable ways to Violet was heartbreaking but I'm glad that they fought for their friendship and didn't end up estranged.
Besides the friendship, there is an examination of school politics where every girl is in competition with everyone else but needs to act friendly and as inoffensively as possible. I ended up thinking about that quite a bit especially because I attended a women's college and some of the same issues are present. How do women interact in such an environment? What kinds of expectations and friendships arise? Some surprisingly depth for what I had anticipated would be just a quick fun read.