Tuesday, January 12, 2016

The List by Siobhan Vivian | Book Review

The List by Siobhan Vivian

Reading Group: High School+

Personal Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

Given Summary:An intense look at the rules of high school attraction -- and the price that's paid for them.

It happens every year before homecoming -- the list is posted all over school. Two girls are picked from each grade. One is named the prettiest, one the ugliest. The girls who aren't picked are quickly forgotten. The girls who are become the center of attention, and each reacts differently to the experience.

With THE LIST, Siobhan Vivian deftly takes you into the lives of eight very different girls struggling with issues of identity, self-esteem, and the judgments of their peers. Prettiest or ugliest, once you're on the list, you'll never be the same.

Cover: The cover shows a girl in front of the lockers holding the list.  It is unclear as to whether this is supposed to be one of the girls on the list in the story or just a random girl in the school.  Either way, it is clear to see from her face that she is effected by what names are on the list.  Maybe she's on it or maybe a friend, sister, or enemy is on it.

My Review: In High School, reputation is everything.  We care what others think of us above all else, even our own opinions.  It seems like we need validation from strangers to make sure that the opinions we have about ourselves are accurate.  This novel shows just how much words can effect how we view ourselves and others.  Ugly and Pretty are just words, but they hold so much more meaning than other words.  And everyone they're said to reacts differently.  This novel proves that.  Being called pretty may come with a need to please and a will to prove to everyone that, yes, you are pretty.  Being called ugly may force you to prove people wrong or make a stand.  Either way, the fight to prove a point always comes with casualties.  You may lose friends, respect, courage.  And once those things are gone it can be hard to get them back.  The List reminds us just how serious words can be and how harmful their effects may be.  It doesn't matter how old you are either, you are effected when things are said about you, especially when they're said anonymously.  I liked how this book gave the perspective of every girl on the list rather than following one of them.  However, when it was over I was still left with a lot of questions.  Does Bridget start eating or get the help she needs?  Does Lauren really leave the school?  Does Andrew apologize and try to get Danielle back?  I wish there was a short epilogue for each of the girls just to explain what happens after the dance.   

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