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feellikethenight
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2007 3:51 pm    Post subject: Maureen Johnson Reply with quote

Funny story.

I saw 13 Little Blue Envelopes in Target, and I read it, and thought to myself, hmm...I should check that out on amazon.

Then Scott posted that video about hanging out with those other authors, and I was like hmm Maureen Johnson doesn't sound very interesting. Then a little later when he talked about her books being banned, I went and looked at her website (which, I am ashamed to admit I did not do before) and I saw that she wrote 13 Little Blue Envelopes.

I bought it yesterday, because it was only $8, and even my limited income couldn't deny it.

And I was totally surprised.

It wasn't amazing, but it was funny, and real. The love story is not the central plot, the travel descriptions rock, and it's somehow very realistic up until the end, which is, of course, when it is okay for it to get a bit ridiculous. It was sad and honest, and it acknowledged the anger people have at losing someone important to them, and the lies we tell ourselves to survive. Frankly, I was expecting something brainless and romancy, and instead I got a lesson on some of the more forgotten and awesome uses of art, and the guts it takes to go anywhere alone. I recommend her a lot.
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Izzy_The_Goddess
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2007 3:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As long as it's not one of those boring romances where the girl is desperate for the guy and the guy treats the girl like his pet dog. Very Happy
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Ammy
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2007 7:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've read all her books and they're great. Okay, I haven't read the one that came out a few weeks ago, but yeah, most of them.

I expected a great book and I got it when I read 13 Little Blue Envelopes. I wasn't surprised at all, because Maureen herself is such a funny, wacky person, and I generally hold these kind of poeple in high esteem.

Her book The Bermudez Triangle is being banned in a school and I've been following up on it. Honestly, the book has NOTHING that could possibly make it a candidate for being banned. Nothing. Two female characters in the novel are dating, and that's just about it.

Why didn't I mention it earlier? Because there really isn't anything about homosexuality that has cause to be banned. Frankly, I'm surprised that homphobia is such a recurring problem in adults. I happily sent a letter to the committee banning the book, and signed the petition as well. Really. The book is actually good and I was angry to hear it's being banned.

What's worse about this situation is that the book would simply have been banned without public opinion if librarian Susan Hunt hadn't emailed Maureen with this news. It was only when Maureen told her readers about this, and when they (plus other well-known authors) sent emails and letters to the committee that the committee was forced to stop in its tracks. A long story ensued, in which committee members claimed they had never banned the book, when, in fact, they had.

Actually, the latest spiece in the saga is that Susan Hunt resigned because of the entire situation. Another librarian was fired for opposing the book banning.
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feellikethenight
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2007 10:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Izzy_The_Goddess wrote:
As long as it's not one of those boring romances where the girl is desperate for the guy and the guy treats the girl like his pet dog. Very Happy


hence why I stated that the romance is not the central plot, nor is it even...romantic. they just end up doing these accidentally nice things for each other, and calmly develop a relationship.
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Ammy
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2007 10:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

feellikethenight wrote:
Izzy_The_Goddess wrote:
As long as it's not one of those boring romances where the girl is desperate for the guy and the guy treats the girl like his pet dog. Very Happy


hence why I stated that the romance is not the central plot, nor is it even...romantic. they just end up doing these accidentally nice things for each other, and calmly develop a relationship.


Not that Izzy was referring to anything in particular. Wink
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Izzy_The_Goddess
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2007 11:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aw, damn! How could you tell!? Very Happy
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feellikethenight
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2007 4:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I also adore Maureen's blog.

http://maureenjohnson.blogspot.com/

she is beyond hilarious!
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Ammy
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2007 1:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tis where I get all my info on her. xD That's how I've come to know of her as a funny person.
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feellikethenight
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2007 5:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

she makes me feel good about life, haha. i want to travel SO badly right now because of her.
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Ammy
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2007 11:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Her craziness (in a good way) reminds me of me. It's so... cool.
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feellikethenight
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 05, 2007 3:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

woohoo! I got my girl at sea postcard in the mail! it made me excited! I was getting kind of bummed because I didn't think I'd get it before I left for Japan but then...TADA! it was there!
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Lil
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2007 2:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ash, why do you always find awesome books cheap?!

I love Maureen's blog! Even if I haven't read any of her books...
For shame, I'm sorry!!
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feellikethenight
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2007 11:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

so I just started reading Devilish.

and I have laughed SO HARD already that I don't know if I can continue. The things she says in this book are just SO ridiculous I need to capitalize SO every time I use it.

for example.

"It looked unnatural, like mascara on a baby." Who thinks of that?

there are more, but i just can't remember.

wait... how the main character had her sister convinced that Alaska used to be called Frigidaire. haha.

there will be more to report on this, when i stop having tears of laughs.
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feellikethenight
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 13, 2007 2:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

alright, so I just sat down and read Devilish in 5 semi-interrupted hours. the interruptions consisted of Gaspard Ulliel gushings and some facebook updates.

anyways.

I LOVED IT.

i mean, i liked 13 little blue envelopes. the story was amazing at it had such a good point.

but the characters totally made Devilish for me. i mean, someone i work with, while going around the building tonight had to knock on my door and ask me to stop laughing so loud. I mean, Jane, she kicks ass. But damn, OWEN. i can see him so perfectly in my head. although, he's a blonde, not a redhead. anyways.

i dont know what took me so long to break down and buy this book!
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feellikethenight
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had my question answered on Maureen's blog!!!!
is it nerdy that I feel really cool because of this?
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Lil
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2007 12:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hahaha no way, that is fuckin awesome!
I love it when people answer your question on their blogs or whatever.
I'm trying to find her books but I can't find them. Sucks bad.
And the couple of times I *did* find them, I had no money!
Plus, they aren't in my local library.
WHAT.
EVER.

Gah.

Anyhoo, I'm busy reading my Attila the Hun book.
Also, the book I bought in Hobart. The complete works of Oscar Wilde with this fucking awesome green cover and gold-coloured pages.
for 12 bucks.
Oh I love second hand book stores.
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feellikethenight
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 26, 2008 11:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm reading the Key to the Golden Firebird, and while I am not really enjoying it all that much, it's typical Maureen in having the ability to make me laugh out loud at really inappropriate moments.
There's a line where May, the central character (whose voice is so crystal clear. she's so defined.) says this line that shouldn't seem funny, but in the context of May and the situation, it made me laugh out loud.

"You're right," May said. "You caught us. We're dating. That's why he brought me all this soup."

and when I read it I made this really weird strangled noise as I tried to hold in the laughter. I happened to be in a place in the hall where it echoed. Loudly. But it was worth it.
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feellikethenight
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 9:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm a bad SAer...I forgot that I read Suite Scarlett.


IT'S MARVELOUS!!!!!

totally hysterical, totally honest, exactly as Maureen always is and always will be.
I am really excited she's making this a series, because there are so many stories to come out of the Hopewell Hotel. Mrs. Amberson is basically the failing hotel's only steady client; although the family thinks they are fooling her into believing they are prosperous, she knows better. Mrs. Amberson, an aged actress, basically steps in and takes over the show in the Martin family, helping each of them towards something that they want. It's the story of a tight and diverse family and the usual crises. What I always like about Maureen is the authentic feeling of her sibling relationships - they aren't overly seperate but they aren't plasticly close either. The characters are very real. Even though it's set in NYC, it's not SOO set in NYC that you get lost in not really knowing what's going on. Everything referenced is something just about everyone would know.

This book made me laugh out loud so hard I didn't even sound like myself. Seriously, it wasn't my laughter coming out of my mouth. When I get my copy back, I'll put down my most favorite two quotes.

This is Scarlett's story, but the funny thing is that I don't find her love interest all that interesting...or attractive. Her older brother Spencer, who you could call the second main character, is a much more appealing character, flirtatious alluded-to sluttiness and all.

Either way, READ THIS.
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Ammy
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 9:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ahhh, I really want to read this. You just make me want it even more.
Tomorrow I'm checking the bookstores, but I'm pretty sure they won't have it.
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Izzy_The_Goddess
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PostPosted: Fri May 01, 2009 3:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maureen is incredibly talented. I just read Devilish and it was SO good. I wasn't expecting it to be so addictive and vibrant, but Maureen's writing style is absolutely perfect and her humour is so natural. How many other YA authors are able to use wit without sounding completely pretentious? Along with The Casts, Maureen seems like one of the few who actually has the capability.

The characters are very real and I was actually able to care for them, particularly Jane Jarvis (one of the best female characters ever), her sister Joan, the villain Lanalee (very refreshing change from the usually bitchy teen-villains) and Owen (who she manages to make attractive without even needing to describe him, or even label him as "attractive") are some of the best characters I have ever read.
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feellikethenight
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PostPosted: Fri May 01, 2009 5:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

you are so right about Owen, haha. I never even though of it that way.

I love Jane's sister...some of the best jokes in the book are with her character, and I love it. I like them as siblings because they are real - they are different but they still get along and have each other's backs.
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Lil
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PostPosted: Sun May 03, 2009 2:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I really enjoy how easy it is to read Maureen's writing. Not that she is a simple author or anything like that. She just manages to make her books flow so easily and makes it really fun and enjoyable to read. I read Devilish early last year or late the year before and I found it really funny. She is hilarious. I seriously didn't expect it to be that funny.
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