Vivian, S. (2012). The list. New York: PUSH. 9780545169172
Reasons for Reading: When perusing other bloggers’ Top Ten Tuesday lists, I stumbled upon Siobhan Vivian’s The List. The conflict described appealed to me so much that I sought the title at my library. When I found the book online, I requested in via HCPL.
Summary: Every year, some anonymous soul posts The List all over Mount Washington High during Homecoming Week. The List shares the names of eight girls, two from each grade – the prettiest and the ugliest. As the summary inside the book says:
ABBY’S joy at being named to the list is clouded by her sister’s resentment.
DANIELLE worries about how her boyfriend will take the news.
LAUREN is a homeschooled girl blindsided by her instant popularity.
CANDACE isn’t ugly, not even close, so it must be a mistake.
BRIDGET knows her summer transformation is nothing to celebrate.
SARAH has always rebelled against traditional standards of beauty, and she decides to take her mutiny to the next level.
And MARGO and JENNIFER, ex-best friends who haven’t spoken in years, are forced to confront why their relationship ended.
These eight girls struggle throughout the book, confronting their social stature as defined in print in eight different ways. While written in third person, the reader becomes privy to the thoughts of these eight girls.
What I Liked: The mystery of who was posting The List compelled me to read this so quickly I nearly suffered paper cuts. While I figured out the culprit well before I hit the back cover, I wanted to know the motives. Author Vivian formed intriguing characters and dealt with true issues such as: popularity, bullying, eating disorders, and self-esteem. I cared about some of these girls, especially Lauren and Danielle.
What I Disliked: The ending (which will remain unspoiled by this reviewer) left me dissatisfied. I wondered if this was the birth of the series as there were some thread left looser than I would’ve desired. Also, eight different characters was at least four too many characters in my opinion. The author could’ve pleased me by focusing on the story of ex-best friends Margo and Jennifer. Lastly, I sure didn’t like most of the parents featured in this book. Dishonorable mention goes to Abby’s parents, Lauren’s mother, and Candace’s mother.
Three Out of Five Pearls
Setting: United States
You might also like:
- Haters by Alisa Valdes-Rodriguez
- What Happened to Goodbye? by Sarah Dessen
- Carrie by Stephen King
- Slam Book by Ann M. Martin
- Just Listen by Sarah Dessen
For more on The List check out the following sites: