"I grew up in one of those loving families that fails to prepare a person for real life..."
A few weeks into first grade Alice's parents took her out of school and have taught her at home ever since. Now she's about to enter high school, with the stated goal of boosting the self-esteem of her counselor, Death Lord Bob. Bob is happy now. But what about Alice?
Will she be able to interact with people her own age who are not home-based learners? Will she be able to survive some sort of boy-girl interaction? Or is this best left until after high school? Until middle age? What about a unique and innovative career path? A new look? (This must, like career choice, reflect uniqueness.)
Alice, I Think is the story of a teenager attempting to survive her parents, her hometown, and her reentry into society. Told through keenly observant, satirical journal entries, Susan Juby's first novel is wise, witty, and utterly original.
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Ever since Alice arrived at first grade dressed as a hobbit and endured a week of increasingly violent peer rejection, she has been home schooled by her hippie mom and indifferent dad, leaving her with what her therapist calls "a shocking poverty of age-appropriate real-life experience." Now Aliceís inept new therapist, Death Lord Bob, has cornered her into agreeing to go to the public high school. Actually, this fits right in with Aliceís career aspirations to become a cultural critic, and her eighties style statement would be working out pretty much all right (especially after she gets a great haircut somewhat by accident) if it werenít for her old nemesis Linda, now grown seriously homicidal, and her two head banger henchmen. Aliceís sensible observations are a rich source of humor in this very funny first novel, as she tries to get her life together in spite of the peculiar aberrations of the "normal" teen and adult population of Smithers, a small ingrown town in British Columbia where entertainment opportunities are limited to excuse-to-drink events like the Northern Saddle Soresí Family Trail Ride. Her mother is the kind of tie-dye clad woman who holds a sage-burning ceremony for safety before starting out on a back-to-school shopping trip, and her friends include bookstore owner Corinne, who is allergic to books. Her romance-writing fatherís poker cronies are equally colorful: gay but style-challenged Finn and taxi-owning Marcus, who has a succession of twenty-years-younger girlfriends who need a ride. When Aliceís sullen girl cousin Frank arrives, a parentsí nightmare with her bizarre outfits and stuffed-animal backpack filled with bottles and baggies, Alice observes the resulting hullabaloo with amused satisfaction, and after a hilarious, precarious car trip to a Fish Show and Drum Workshop, she finds herself well on the way to acquiring a friend and a boyfriend. Older teens will enjoy the story and the many descriptions of wacky clothes if they can get past the misguided cover, a picture of five-year-old Alice's chubby hobbit-clad legs. (Ages 12 and older) --Patty CampbellAbout the Author:
SUSAN JUBY is the author of the critically acclaimed Getting the Girl and Another Kind of Cowboy, as well as the bestselling Alice series (Alice, I Think; Miss Smithers; Alice MacLeod, Realist at Last) and her latest novel for adults, The Woefield Poultry Collective. After dropping out of fashion college and attaining a BA from the University of British Columbia, Susan went to work in the book industry. She holds a master’s degree in publishing. She currently lives on Vancouver Island with her husband, James, and their dog, who prefers to remain anonymous. Visit her online at susanjuby.com.
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