Tag Archives: gossip

Gossip: Good for the Soul, Believe It or Not

As someone who was bullied in middle school, just like everyone else was bullied in middle school I understand how hurtful other humans’ words can be. Still, we all talk about other people. We discuss our favorite literary characters on Goodreads, we analyze our beloved television and movie protagonists on Tumblr, and we hear parents converse about their children all the time. But talking about your peers or other people in general brings benefits, even though society tells us otherwise. The rewards of gossip depend on the gossipers’ intent, and if done for the right reasons, it can help out several people.

This selfie from a few months ago captures how I feel about middle school. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times... just kidding, it was only the worst of times.

This selfie from a few months ago captures how I feel about middle school. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times… just kidding, it was only the worst of times.

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Speechless by Hannah Harrington

Cover via Goodreads.

Cover via Goodreads.

Rating: 4/5 stars.

If books could reproduce – don’t ask me for visuals – Speechless by Hannah Harrington would be the child of Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson and Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver. All three are YA, contemporary books I would love to just shove at my future students and force them to read.

Chelsea Knot can’t keep a secret. She’s one of those girls. If you’ve read any young-adult realistic fiction or if you’ve watched Mean Girls, you know the archetype I’m talking about. The totally selfish, totally conceited, totally all-I-care-about-is-my-popularity girl who gossips about everyone and cares about no one. In this case our protagonist Chelsea is second-in-command to her best friend and utter b-word Kristen. But when Chelsea blabs at a party and almost ends someone’s life, her sheltered existence comes crashing down. She decides to take a vow of silence – but even with that, can she bring herself to forgive, to face the truth, and finally, to somehow speak up for herself? Continue reading

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Filed under 4 stars, Book Reviews, Books

Some Girls Are by Courtney Summers

Cover via Goodreads

Rating: 4/5 stars.

After reading this and Cracked Up to Be, I think that Courtney Summers is like a darker, less innocent version of Sarah Dessen. Actually, Summers is so great she deserves a young-adult category of her own. While Dessen intricately weaves her writing with detail and finesse, Summers tragically tears through any presumptions of the reader and rams them with raw emotion.

I hated this book so much. It was unbearable how much I wanted to reach into the pages and slap each of these girls hard across the face. I’m aware that I’m a fifteen-year-old boy, but the things the girls do to one another is absolutely wretched – some of them probably could have gone to jail for the crimes they committed. If one were to look for a prime example of why teachers and school officials need to keep a closer on eye on teenagers, this book contains an amalgam of reasons. It was almost animalistic, or purely inhuman how indecent these characters could be.

And yet, yes, there’s always a yet – I could not put this book down. I had to witness what was going to happen next, and not to use a cliche, but it was exactly like awaiting a car crash and then not being able to look away from it.

Although this looks like stereotypical chick lit, it made me think a copious amount. These girls are cruel and cantankerous, so shouldn’t they deserve what they get in return? But then again, does anyone deserve what Kara, Liz, Michael, and finally Regina was forced to go through? I felt unusually sick when I started empathizing with the characters, but Summers made it too easy to do just that.

Not the most eloquently written review, but Some Girls Are triggered tumultuous emotions that will last for a long time. Readers will watch mesmerized as Regina battles her former friends – even as they raze each other to the ground.

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Filed under 4 stars, Book Reviews, Books