Saturday, June 28, 2008
I can't really fully explain why I enjoyed this book so much, but here goes. Blue Van Meer is a teenage girl whose mother died when she was five. Since then she and her father have lived in dozens of nondescript small towns as he serves as a visiting professor at various crappy regions colleges. Because of their frequent moves, Blue does not make friends but instead reads book after book, from movie star biographies to sociological and physiological treatises. She drops quotations from these books (real and imaginary, according the reviews) as she tells the story of her senior year in high school. For the first time she and her father spend a full year in one town, and Blue joins the circle of students that have a bit of a cult built up around Hannah Schneider, the school's film studies teacher. Hannah takes them on a camping trip and then disappears before she can tell Blue a secret. Hannah is later found dead and Blue fights to prove her death is murder, not a suicide. It took a long time to get to the mystery and I see how some could find the citations a bit much, but I thought it was the best book I've read in a quite while.