Am I Normal Yet? is the first book in a trilogy about a group of girls who set up their own feminist campaign group called ‘The Spinster Club’. I think YA gets a bad rep when it comes to feminism. So many people keep bleating out the dreaded words ‘Bella’ and ‘Swan’ – like Twilight isn’t a) TEN years old, and b) Not the only YA book out there. In fact, YA have LOADS of incredibly feminist books, and here are my top 5.
1) The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart
Most people know E C Lockhart for her haunting We Were Liars, but I have to say I actually preferred this book. Frankie is very much in love with her new boyfriend, but she can’t understand why she isn’t allowed into his secret boys-only club at their top private school. So she infiltrates it…
Why it rocks:
Frankie is the very definition of ‘kick-ass’ – you spend the entire book wishing you could be her. This book has incredible insight into the thirst of power, the complexities and contradictions of being a teen feminist who also wants a boyfriend. A top-notch quirky teen feminism manifesto!
Favourite quote: “It is better to be alone, she figures, than to be with someone who can’t see who you are. It is better to lead than to follow. It is better to speak up than stay silent. It is better to open doors than to shut them on people.”
I thought Code Name Verity was hard-hitting, but Rose Under Fire was painful in comparison. The companion novel to the award-winning success of Code Name Verity was just as good and maybe even more emotional.
Set in part in the brutal concentration camp of Ravensbrück, Rose Under Fire follows the life of American pilot and recreational poet Rose Justice.
I really liked Rose and found her story a very sad one indeed. The one problem I did have with her was that she wasn’t as easy to connect to and invest in as the main characters of Code Name Verity and I think this was because we got to see a lot of their history and background.
The treatment that Rose received whilst in Ravensbrück was appalling and we only got to see her side of things. To think of the things that other people had to face is just awful to think about. The rabbits, especially. It made me feel sick to think of the things that they’d been through.
Rose Under Fire was written beautifully. I cannot fault Wein’s ability to draw me in and make me unable to put her books down. This was glued to my hand and I longed to be reading it when I wasn’t.
I can’t wait to see what’s next from Wein because this really was a treasure to read. Highly recommended!
Side note: Only a mini review today because I’ve already posted two reviews this week and I went back to school yesterday. Thank you!