November 6, 2013

Latest Read: The Rule of Thirds by Chantel Guertin

Here are the basics ...
The Rule of Thirds by Chantel Guertin
Publication date: Oct. 1, 2013
Publisher: ECW Press
Category: Young Adult - Contemporary
Source: Purchased

Summary: Sixteen-year-old Pippa Greene never goes anywhere without her camera. She and her best friend Dace long ago mapped out their life plan: Pippa will be the noted fashion photographer, and Dace the cover girl. But ever since last spring, things have changed —and Pippa's junior year at Spalding High proves to have its own set of challenges. Not only is Vantage Point, the statewide photography competition, in three short weeks, but her mandatory volunteering placement lands her at St. Christopher’s Hospital, a place Pippa never wanted to set foot in again. With humor and pluck, she navigates her new role as a candy striper, her changing relationship with her best friend and her new love interests (yes, plural). One thing is certain: real life is a lot more complicated than a photograph. (Adapted goodreads.com)
My thoughts…
The Rule of Thirds refers to a rule on how to compose visual images - art or in Pippa's case, photos. I am going to take that rule and share three things I enjoyed about the the book and three things I wasn't too crazy about.

3 THINGS I LOVED:
  • Photography. Pippa's number one passion in life is photography. She's almost never without a camera (she has two!), is the president of the photography club and enters the Vantage Point contest to get into the Tisch School of Arts. I love characters who are passionate and she certainly fits the bill. As she would describe her photos, I could see each scene so clearly. It made me to want pick up a camera (or my iPhone) and snap some cool shots.
  • Friendship. More and more, I finally myself looking for female friendships in YA books so I was happy to see that Dace, Pippa's best friend, plays a big role in her life. They have sleepovers and fantasize about a future in which they share an apartment in New York together living out their dreams (it reminded me of my best friend!). They go through some growing pains throughout the course of the book which felt realistic to me and I liked how it was portrayed.
  • Family. Pippa's parents are a constant in this book (another rarity!) and I liked that Pippa had a good relationship with them both. Even when her mom was enforcing curfews. I can't say too much without giving away an important plot point but certain moments will definitely pull at your heartstrings. 

3 THINGS I DIDN'T LOVE:
  • Love triangle. I don't hate all love triangles. If done right, they can be really compelling but I do not enjoy the ones where the choice is super obvious. Especially if it's obvious to the girl and she continues to be involved with the guy she doesn't want. To me it's a blatant, unnecessary plot device. As you can probably guess, there are two guys here and it's clear from like chapter 2 who Pippa wants to be with. I would've rather spent time getting to know the right guy better instead of wasting scenes with the wrong one.
  • Pippa. There were qualities about Pippa I loved - her passion and down-to-earth nature. But she was very flaky. I get that she's young but when I would think about what she's been through and the drive in which she pursues photography, her immature moments felt almost inconsistent. Especially when it came to the love triangle. I couldn't understand why she didn't just speak up. You don't like him, then don't kiss him. It's as simple as that. It was just hard for me to connect to her.
  • The ending. Overall, I didn't like it. Especially how the Vantage Point competition played out. It brought me to back to how Pippa should've handled the situation differently (or the school should have for that matter).
Do I recommend?: I think this is a good book to borrow from the library if you want something light and short. It's not one of my favorite contemporaries but I can also see why other people enjoy it.

Happy reading!

2 comments:

  1. It's a shame that the novel didn't work out since I think I would've liked it (photography! realistic female friendships!). I'll probably end up picking it up from the library if I see it on the shelves...

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  2. I LOVE the fact that the main character is obsessed with photography! It's always cool, like you said, when the main character has a strong passion for something. I appreciate good photography so to have a character be obsessed with that is pretty cool!

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