Sunday, January 29, 2012
Pink Smog by Francesca Lia Block
Oh Weetzie Bat, how I missed you so damn much. I worried when I first started this book. I had a hard time getting into it. But I think it was mostly just because I was feeling sort of down lately AND because I just finished John Green's amazing The Fault in Our Stars and any book is bound to be hard to get into after an amazing read like that. But once I got into this book, I fell under it's spell and I fell hard. I fell into that world that only Francesca Lia Block can create. With beautiful colors and beautiful adjectives and amazing characters and sweet, melancholy paragraphs. God I love her....she's like the Tori Amos of books to me.
This is sort of a prequel to the Dangerous Angels series. It follows Weetzie Bat during her teenage years. And yes, you can read this either before or after the Dangerous Angels series, but whatever you do, PLEASE read them all!!! Here, we find Weetzie as a teenager in Los Angeles, a city she describes as shrouded in pink smog. She gets picked on in school for being a freak. The strange girl who always wears roller skates. Who lives in an apartment complex with an alcoholic mother and a father that's just left and a whole cast of bizarre neighbors.
Weetzie befriends the other two people who get picked on at school, Lily, a girl struggling with Anorexia, and Bobby, who's gay and is incessantly ridiculed for it. But when the three of them are together, they are just friends. They're not "a freak, an anorexic and a fag." Weetzie yearns for her father, who just disappeared. She gets cryptic messages and phone calls, and there's a boy named Winter who she starts having feelings for that's been sent to watch out for her. Another dangerous angel if you will.
This is mainly a story of surviving through adolescence. And god, is it ever a beautiful one. It is FILLED with feelings of nostalgia and melancholy and if you like books like that, you'll love this one. Block's writing is just so damn beautiful that it's so easy to get lost in it. Get wrapped up in it. There's a scene that brought me to tears where Weetzie, Lily and Bobby get high together and listen to Janis Ian's "At Seventeen" and cry. It was just such a perfect snapshot of adolescence. Or a part of it. Adolescence isn't all tears, but that's a part of it.
It was great to get more of Weetzie's story too. To see where she came from. To see how she became the Weetzie Bat that I know and love. That fun loving, accepting, beautiful person. Yet another perfect little book by Ms. Francesca Lia Block.
In other news, I did a bad bad thing today and Dave Ramsey would be ashamed of me. Remember how I started this review by saying I've had a rough few days? I've mentioned before I get depressed. Well to fight my depression I've always shopped. It's been my vice. And of course I've just cut out spending completely lately. In fact I've done the opposite. I've sold off many of my most beloved books to get out of debt and I'm proud to say I've made about $1000 off of them. Well this happened today.
I read Renay's review of Chime on the Lady Business blog. It was awesome. Here's my thought process. I'll treat myself to Chime from Barnes and Noble with some of the money from my Blow Money envelope (FYI: this is in my budget). Go on Barnes and Noble website. Check to see if Chime is in stock and it is not at my local store. Well, maybe I'll buy it on my Nook. You know what? I really hate my Nook. Maybe I'll buy one of the newer ones! Hmmm...You know I made a lot of money on all of those books I sold and I'll feel temporarily better if I buy myself something new AND I can read Chime! Go buy Nook Color. I guess the good news is, I COULD have bought the tablet, but it's not practical for me...I have an iPhone, a PS3 and Netflix and a Macbook...not much a tablet could serve me for. So $179 later, I have a Nook Color :/ Like I said...Dave Ramsey would NOT be proud. I'm supposed to be SAVING money right now!! Anyway...I shall start Chime later :p