30 October 2009

She wasn't the kind of girl to attempt a makeover.

In the world of sarcastic teens, Frankie Landau-Banks is queen, but she's determined to be king.

In The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks, Frankie is a student at a prestigious boarding school, Alabaster Prep. Her newly filled-out shirt negates her sophomore status; she gains the attentions of Matthew Livingston, a senior. After they begin dating, Frankie discovers that Matthew is a member of a secret society called "the Loyal Order of the Basset Hounds," a once "respected" group of male pranksters. Angered by patriarchy and eager to prove herself, she creates a little prank of her own.

The message behind this book is clear--women are equal to men.

One aspect I feel is particularly unique is the recognition of differences between men and women; it separates the idea that women can only be equal to men if they are exactly the same. Frankie embraces her femininity while asserting her voice, while plotting and planning and scheming, while hoping for a better salad bar. Her introduction may seem as though she's taking the fall for these boys when in fact, she's taking the credit.

The message behind this book is clear--women do not have to act like men in order to be equal to men.

I've decided that, for the purposes of my Adolescent in American Literature class, I need to look at these books through a lens of thematic content more than syntactic content. My preferences are very particular, and viewing these books through such a limited perspective prohibits my ability to grant them merit, which is not fair to the authors or the readers or the characters for that matter.

The message behind this book is clear, and that's what makes it worth reading.