To cut to the chase, my alternative to my dissertation is likely to be looking at how teen literature is a terrible example for young and impressionable females when it comes to relationships. With this in mind, I was recommended this.
Know how say, Twilight romanticises stalking? Or how Mortal Instruments has a girl witness a murder, but be swept away with the murderer because he’s pretty?
This is just as bad, if not worse. And I hate my friend who recommended it. But not really, since she too gave it a shocking rating.
To the book itself: When it comes to descriptions of their surroundings, there is basically none. It’s completely relationship-focused, which should mean that the characterisation is good, right?
Patch is a stalker. Pure and simple. Fallen angel or not, Nora was paired with him for a get-to-know-your-new-bio-partner task and he already knew her inside out. And that freaked her out.
Good! I thought finally we have a teen heroine who is willing to put her genitals at bay because pretty doesn’t make up for creepy. She disliked his obnoxious and harassing comments, she even rejected him on a good few occasions when he made sexual advances on her. Finally, I thought, clutching my Kindle. Perhaps I would have to change my topic after all.
Oh, no, wait. He openly creeps you out, you’re interviewing his fellow staff to see if he has a criminal record or history of stalking, your new guidance counsellor warns you against him, he’s no good, stay away, Nora!
Oh, you went on a date with him? Okay. You find out he’s a fallen angel, you touch his scar and find out he’s been sent to kill you! But it’s okay, because he hasn’t yet.
He befriended you with the sole purpose of killing you. He took you on a fair ride to kill you, he came into your house and cooked with the intention of killing you, but he didn’t. So that’s okay.
Did I mention he’s pretty?
And, just to show the horrible example it sets to females (this one irks me on personal experience): Elliot turns up at her house and physically threatens her. And her friend brushes it off because she wants to spend time with him and, more particularly, his friend.
I return to my point, that rises from every damn piece of teen lit I read: creepy is romanticised. Stalking is romanticised. Intention to kill you is romanticised – but only if he doesn’t go through with it! Physical violence is overlooked if there’s a cute boy involved.
Take a risk in life, yes. Throw yourself headfirst into a relationship for better or worse, yes. Life is fun when there’s a little risk or unpredictability. I’ll give the book it’s fictional exception with the fallen angel parts, because I can’t logically pick fault at an impossibility, but the undertones of how people act is beyond a joke.
Like with so many in teen lit: if he loves you in the end, it’s okay that he wanted to kill you, and stalks you, and hates you being involved with other men.