I liked Cinnamon Girl by Melissa Keil. I liked the roll of the language, the angst, the heart ache, the sheer teenage desperation of what ifs and whateva’s. I wanted Alba to love Grady but not too much. No teenage boy deserves that much attention and if he thinks he does; he can work for it. You see, that’s how it hooked me in. My endless female need for romance and irreplaceable devotion. It ‘Room With A Viewed ‘ and ‘Mr Darcy coming out the lake‘d me. (I threw in a picture from Twilight just to show you that I don’t churn butter for a living and Daniel Craig because I’m waiting out his marriage.)
Listen to this,
“Alba, I’ve loved you for seventeen years. If it takes that long to get over you- do you know how old I’m gonna be? I’ll be living with a thousand dogs or collecting spoons or whatever loser guys do…… because I’ve tried and tried to want someone else but you are the only person in the whole world who I know I belong with”.
Yeah baby…… Got a bit dewy reading that and alternatively cross at husband. A strange alchemy. It was like dipping myself in tub of flowers and strawberries whilst thinking ‘my god, he better take me out to dinner soon and spring for an expensive bottle of wine or he’s a dead man walking’. Ah love……I’m skipping ahead though….. Cinnamon Girl jolts and rambles with all the energy of an antsy teenager. I’ll provide a list:
- Alba, Grady, and friends all wish desperately to get out of Albany and pursue big city dreams.
- Suddenly, the town is the site of a you-tube hoax.
- It’s the end of the world, the apocalypse has begun,
- Daniel, the cute bestie from days past has breezed in from the big smoke and now we have friction.
- Grady loves her, Daniel appreciates her smoking bod.
- Alba realises their can be only one. (Just like Highlander)
(It’s like someone read my diary. O.k. the two guys fighting over me is part of a dream sequence but I do have a smokin’ bod).
Anyway, between Psychic Ned prophesying the end of the world and babelicious Daniel making the moves on Alba, life is hectic in Albany. She is unaware of Grady’s devotion but finally realises he is the ONE!!!!! Personally, I would have dilly-dallied and shilly-shallied with Danny boy a bit and maybe a few of the local surfers as well but this is Cinnamon Girl not Librarian Girl.
The language and style of the book is very Tim Wintonish- Lockie Leonardish (changed that to a verb-clever). Lots of Aussie slang and whiny tones but engaging and fast paced. She writes well does Melissa Keil. She gets love and youth and suffering. She understands the tumble and whoosh of being young and wanting the ‘other’; other life, other boy, other city.
I’m going to end on a high romantic note because I know you want it and I’ve already warned hubby he better read this blog or I’m taking off with an Argentinian polo player. (We get two or three a week in the library). Ahem….
“You’ve never understood…that I can’t go anyway that you aren’t Alba. You’ve never understood that I can’t stand being away from you, even for a weekend. Not even for a day. You just don’t get that I’m so hopelessly in love with you that the thought of not seeing you every day makes me feel like someone is yanking out an arm”.
We all deserve such devotion; some more than others. (I’m the some, you’re the others).
Cinammon Girl was shortlisted for the Children’s Book Council of Australia Book of the Year 2015 in the Older Readers category. It is also in the 2015 Gold Inky Awards Longlist.