Write Naked

Peter Gould, Author . FSG/Kroupa $16.95 (247p) ISBN 978-0-374-38483-8

Victor, the 16-year-old protagonist of this belletristic first novel, has gone to his uncle's cabin in the Vermont woods to try out an aphorism he's seen, “You have to be naked to write”; there he meets Rose Anna, a home-schooled free spirit and fellow writer who is also 16. The two continue to meet and write together; Rose Anna also lectures him on Wicca and the environment. Their conversations rarely have the feel of genuine dialogue, and their nostalgia for the '60s (when both their mothers lived on communes) gets redundant. Often Victor, while sympathetic, seems overly earnest, as when he feels overwhelmed by Rose Anna's writing and thinks, “I need a metaphor.” Rose Anna, meanwhile, is too wise, passionate and free of self-consciousness to be a believable teen character. Her story about global warming takes away from the flow of the narrative, and readers are unlikely to share Victor's high opinion of it. Ages 14–up. (June)

Reviewed on: 06/16/2008
Release date: 05/01/2008
Genre: Children's
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