Thursday, March 22, 2012

Love & Leftovers ~ Sarah Tregay review

Love & Leftovers
Katherine Tegan Books
December 27, 2011
451 pages
add to Goodreads/buy on Amazon/or on Book Depository

When Marcie's parents' marriage falls apart, her mother doesn't take it well. It's coming up on Labor Day and their summer escape to Marcie's maternal grandmother's cabin in New Hampshire shows no sign of drawing to a close. With Marcie's group of friends - the 'Leftovers,' those who don't fit into any clique or particular social group - along with her emo-rocker boyfriend and her father left behind in Idaho, New Hampshire doesn't feel like home.

But when Marcie starts school in New Hampshire and leaves her Leftover status behind and a cute boy starts bringing her breakfast every day, she thinks the new state might not be quite so horrible.  But is this new relationship love? Was her last? Will she ever know?

Love & Leftovers, is a great debut. Told in verse, it lets readers see just what we need to about Marcie and how she's coping with her move (that she does not at first realize is going to be a move) to New Hampshire and leaving her friends, boyfriend, and father behind. We see her mother who is dealing with her divorce very not like an adult, it would seem.

The different poems allows to see how Marcie feels about different situations as well as the most important things that happen to her - and without anything extraneous. I am sometimes wary of verse novels over prose but I think the form was perfect for this story. It allowed things to focus on Marcie and to some of the things (including pronunciation of her name/the accents) seem like they would have been harder, seemed more awkward to include in a book told in traditional prose.

While Love & Leftovers is marketed/reviewed as a love story, I didn't think that was the strongest part. I really loved Marcie figuring things out - what these new developments meant for and to her - and enjoyed her interactions with her friends and family, but the 'love story' wasn't that strong for me.

Love & Leftovers is a great verse (and IM and conversation) novel) that does a fantastic job getting the emotion across, I think you'll enjoy this quick, lyrical read.

Rating: 8/10

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