Skip to content

Book: The Blue Girl

October 23, 2008

It’s been so long since I’ve read a Charles de Lint novel that I’d almost forgotten how fabulous a writer he is. The difference between this YA novel and the others I’ve been reading lately is like night and day. Don’t get me wrong; I’m sure I would have adored Christopher Pike if I’d read his books in middle school — but Charles de Lint is in another category altogether. His writing is just a beautiful thing.

Set in Newford, which I guess is a fictional town where many of his stories are set, Imogene is a tough girl trying to make her life different this year. She’s the new girl in town, and although is a misfit by nature, she manages to pick out exactly the right girl to be her friend: Maxine. While Imogene is a rough-and-tumble thrift-shop-chic punk-rock gang girl, Maxine is quiet, studious, slightly nerdy and well-behaved. Match made in heaven right? Actually, yes. The two become best friends almost immediately.

The two navigate life at high school as the misfit twins, dodging mean-girl bullies and their meaner boyfriends, hanging out together and each influencing the other in (mostly) positive ways. Until Imogene sees the ghost boy. Adrian. The resident ghost at Redding High. From that moment on, things take a decidedly different turn. A turn for the worse. And things get really weird.

I loved the story, loved the characters, loved the writing. This is intelligent teen writing — smart enough for an adult, not dumbed-down in any way. Lyrical yet grounded, de Lint brings the most fantastic characters to life, bringing a sense of the everyday to the otherworldly happenings.

I really enjoyed Imogene’s character. She was a fun mix of punky rebel and wannabe good-girl. Her friend Maxine was interesting to watch blossom from a wallflower to a powerfully brave young woman, ready to do anything to help her best friend.

Although there were brownies gone bad, and soul-eaters, and ghosts and imaginary friends come to life, this was mostly a story about the strength of the bonds of friendship, and being brave in ways you never imagined, and finding out what kind of person you actually want to be. I completely enjoyed the experience of reading this book; it was the sort of book you can really curl up and get into and really enjoy.

Lovely, fun, and perfect for Halloween (it’s set just about this time of year, and the major event happens on Halloween), I am now back into the Charles de Lint groove. I have an adult novel of his here at home somewhere and I know there’s at least one more adult novel at the library. And clearly, his YA novels are also completely readable.

But first, my last (I imagine) RIP book: The Terror. I can’t wait to read this! I’m starting it tonight.

No comments yet

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s