Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Review: Withering Tights by Louise Rennison

Title: Withering Tights
Author: Louise Rennison
Series: Misadventures of Tallulah Casey Book # 1
Genre: Young Adult, Humour and Romance
Rating In Kisses:

4.5 Kisses
Synopsis: The misadventures of Tallulah Casey…
Hilarious new series from Queen of Teen – laugh your tights off at the (VERY) amateur dramatic antics of Talullah and her bonkers mates. Boys, snogging and bad acting guaranteed! 

     Picture the scene: Dother Hall performing arts college somewhere Up North, surrounded by rolling dales, bearded cheesemaking villagers (male and female) and wildlife of the squirrely-type.

     On the whole, it’s not quite the showbiz experience Tallulah was expecting… but once her mates turn up and they start their ‘FAME! I’m gonna liiiiive foreeeeeever, I’m gonna fill my tiiiiights’ summer course things are bound to perk up.

    Especially when the boys arrive. (When DO the boys arrive?)
Six weeks of parent-free freedom.
BOY freedom.
Freedom of expression…
cos it’s the THEATRE dahling, theatre!!

How I Heard About It: I actully first heard about this book shortly after graduation. I had come back to visit SBS and was in the computer room, when I decided to go on Louise Rennison's website. Her UK one, not the American one. The American one really sucks. Even the Australian website is better than the American one. Quite depressing if you ask me, but back to the point. I had gone on her website, when I noticed she had another book coming out in July! Sadly, it has yet to come out in American. Hence the reason my mother had to import it. 

First Impression: I was very sure it would be a lot like Georgia Nicholson series. Funny and bonkers filled to the brim with characters that you wished were your best friends and some characters that were. And of course boys. Lots and lots of boys and snogging. And an owl. Because it's on the cover. (I'm starting to think Louise Rennison has a owl fetish of some type.) With the end of Georgia Nicholson, I expected this book to be as funny if not more. 

Full Impression: Don't get me wrong, I loved this book, but it could have been more. After such and hilarious and utterly mad series that the Georgia Nicholson series was, I had very high expectations. It's not that this book didn't meet them, it just didn't meet them all at the pace I would have preferred. The beginning was a bit slow. The jokes were not the Laugh-So-Hard-That-You-Roll-Off-The-Couch funny that I expected. But, by page thirty-something or forty-something, I was getting really into it and laughing like a mad woman. I know what your thinking, thirty/forty-something? That's pretty far, isn't? Not really, the lettering is big for each page because the book is quite massive in size. Not page size, but height. I wonder if it's just a UK book binding thing. 

    The characters are all memorable relatable. The most unique character to me was Honey, one of Tallulah's new friends. I found myself sorta relating to her. Not because she was the most experienced in the boy department or because she was the most physically matured of the group (I wish I could relate to those things *sigh*). Instead, I related to her because she had a lisp. In her dialogue (and whenever the other characters repeated her words) all her "s" came out like a "th". Example: I don't think I can go a whole thummer without boyth." At times her dialogue can be a bit of a challenge to understand, but it was defiantly funny and made the character. 

    I also love the characters of Cain, the rock star bad boy in town who writes ridiculous songs and has no problem snogging and dumping any girl within his reach; Ruby, a wise ten year old who becomes Tallulah's "fun-sized friend" from almost the very beginning, and very much like a little sister to her by end; Charlie and Phil, two boys sent to Woolfe Academy for Young Men after an incident involving a science lab and a small explosion; and Alex, Ruby's hot older brother who is all hot in his hottie-hot-hotness. 

    And of course we can't forget the our protagonist Tallulah. She's 14.5, knobby kneed, and corkless (I'll let you find out the definition of corkless for yourself). She isn't quite like  Georgia, but as Georgia Nicholson's younger cousin, she wants to be. She considers Georgia to be all mature and wise like. Obviously, just telling you that lets you know that she's bound for trouble. My favorite trait of hers is her crazy Irish dancing gene that she inherited from her Irish side of the family. Whenever she is nervous and in the spotlight, she turns to Riverdance. Very funny, very funny indeed. 

Cover: I love the colors of the cover. Very fun and girly, perfect for the story. Though the owl freaks me out a bit...

Dislikes: The fact that the first thirty or so pages are sorta slow and not as funny as they could be. I wanted to the book to open and end with a bang. I got the funny bang at the end, but not necessarily a bang in the beginning. I WANT MORE BANG!!! 

Final Thoughts: It's a wonderful, light hearted read that relates to a certain part of us all. Louise Rennison has a knack for getting into the mind of a teen and giving us lovable stories that make us think of our own crushes, weird families, and horrible embarrassing moments. Her writing style can be quite simple and is very telly not showy(which is what writers are supposed to not do), but it works for her perfectly with the story and Tallulah.  I would say the level is a bit younger than Georgia Nicholson, but is a great book none the less. I'm looking forward to book two. Oh, and I'll always remember one thing. "A boy in a hand is worth two in the bus."


P.S. I will never be able to think of hiking socks in the same way again. 


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