Blurb: There’s a reason Facebook has the Status Update, “It’s Complicated.” Follow four college roommates, Claire, Palmer, Hannah and Kat as they maneuver crushes, confusion, and the crisis when pushy boys go too far. Complicated as it is, these four friends will pull through, guided by the strength of their friendship and the power of God’s love.
Out of all the books from the book club, It’s Complicated (Status Updates #1) by Laura L. Smith was very unique in several ways. For one – it alternated between four different points of view. For another, it’s intensely issue-driven. I ended up enjoying the book but I wasn’t sure I would at first. It took quite a few chapters for me to get all the girls straight and be comfortable with the head hopping. I liked Kat the best – partly because of her name 😉 – but I also liked how she seemed to have a level head though she took some risks driving around with boys she barely knew. Oh, and I didn’t realize Palmer was olive-skinned until almost the very end of the book.
Also I was so confused after the prologue when suddenly Claire was in Paris. I was expecting the story to start with the girls in college – I hadn’t realized half the book would be the summer beforehand with all the girls separated. Plus I was expecting a main plot with a beginning, middle and end. This felt more… slice-of-life is what I want to call it? Each of the girls just living their lives and encountering various real-life guy issues and many of the arcs not having any closure. (Presumably they are addressed in the rest of the series?)
The biggest thing was I knew a date-rape was coming at some point (thanks to another reviewer) but since I didn’t know who, I felt like that part was hanging over my head lurking around every corner and I couldn’t enjoy the book until it was behind me. I did think the rape was handled very well, though. I’m very sensitive to anything involving children or SVU situations. I put down the book after the rape scene and had a hard time sleeping afterwards – I was glad to get that part over with but it bummed me out for the rest of the night. But if I hadn’t known it was coming, I would have been taken aback and furious, so I’m not sure the book is marked well in that regard.
I can definitely see where this book is fantastically realistic for what teens that age go through. I spent the entire book thinking the girls were attending the most liberal Christian college I’d ever heard of only to learn afterwards it was a secular school. Well that explained the mixed-gender dorms and alcohol! lol Thankfully I didn’t encounter any of the situations the 4 girls did when I was in college, but I was blessed in that regard.
What issues do you like to see in fiction?
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