Monday, February 7, 2011

Book Review: Tuesday Tells it Slant

By Melissa Amster

Have you ever wished for a chance to start your life with a clean slate, or at least re-tell it in a more desirable fashion?

While researching for a paper about Emily Dickinson, Tuesday Morning comes across a line that says "Tell all the truth but tell it slant." She then decides to go through her diary (named after her favorite "Babysitter's Club" character) and remove the undesirable entries, replacing them with more desirable versions of how her life was in the past. She also performs some other drastic attempts to forget her old past. This ends up having a strong effect on her life going forward, until she is confronted by someone from that version of the past.

This was a more complex novel than I was expecting. It looks cute and comes off as a quick read (which it was, as it only took me two days), but there's more to it than meets the eye. The structure made me think of "The Time Traveler's Wife," as there's no specific order to the story. The past is so mingled with the present that each chapter encompasses several different periods of Tuesday's life. They're all scattered about and I didn't really get a feel for the order overall. I also was reminded of "50 First Dates" in how Lucy kept a diary so she could remember the things in her life that disappeared when she went to sleep each night. At one point, she changes her diary to write Henry out of it altogether, making their separation that much easier on her.

Tuesday was a very well-written character and she reminded me of myself a lot. I like how candid she was, showing the reader all her little flaws. She just seemed very real and genuine and I could see myself easily becoming friends with her. Her editing of her past reminds me of something I do with my personal blog (leaving out some less desirable people, behaviors and moments as I see fit). I also enjoyed the pop culture references from the late 80's and early-mid 90's.

On the critical side, I noticed a lot of spelling and grammatical errors that should have been caught before the story was published. And as I mentioned before, I didn't get a feel for why the moments in the story had to be scattered around instead of going in order. Ms. Christine could have still found a way to get her point across by making it the climax between the past and present, instead of just injecting it into what felt like random spots of the story.

Overall, I thought this was a very creative and insightful story, one that I have not seen much of in the chick lit field. I would recommend it to anyone who wants a quick read and a different way to look at their own life. I think you might find a little Tuesday in you too.

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