Release Date: 03/26/13
When Mallory’s boyfriend, Jeremy, cheats on her with an online girlfriend, Mallory decides the best way to de-Jeremy her life is to de-modernize things too. Inspired by a list of goals her grandmother made in 1962, Mallory swears off technology and returns to a simpler time (when boyfriends couldn’t cheat with computer avatars). The List:
1. Run for pep club secretary
2. Host a fancy dinner party/soiree
3. Sew a dress for Homecoming
4. Find a steady
5. Do something dangerous
But simple proves to be crazy-complicated, and the details of the past begin to change Mallory’s present. Add in a too-busy grandmother, a sassy sister, and the cute pep-club president–who just happens to be her ex’s cousin–and soon Mallory begins to wonder if going vintage is going too far.
My thoughts on the book:
Going Vintage is an adorable tale of a young girl finding her independence. On the surface, this book seems deceptively simple, but there is a lot going on underneath the cute plot and charming characters. Leavitt addresses straight-forward, but important issues such as romanticizing the past, the importance of trust and open communication in relationships, and the difficult journey of finding oneself during adolescence. This is one coming of age tale that you won't want to miss.
Mallory is an inspirational and real leading character/narrator. She is fairly mature for her age, but still comes across as a teenager. Also, instead of drowning in misery because her boyfriend of a year (not a couple of weeks... yea I'm looking at you Bella Swan) cheats on her, she beings an odd, yet intriguing path to find her own identity. The people she interacts with along the way are entertaining as well. Her parents are a bit odd, but her sister is extremely supportive. I really loved her grandmother, too. And Oliver is fantastic. I totally fell in love with him. The dialogue between the characters is extremely natural and, at times, hilarious. Leavitt definitely excels in characterization and character interactions.
The plot is interesting and unique, but the pacing is a bit slow in the beginning. However, after the first 20%, I was completely invested in this story and could not put the book down. I read this entire novel in one sitting because I had to see the outcome of Mallory's social experiment... and I also had to find out what would happen between her and Oliver. The ending threw me for a bit of a loop, but I really liked it. Leavitt took a different route, and I feel that it worked better than the ending I envisioned.
Overall, I'd recommend this story to anyone who wants a light, yet meaningful read. This is one of those "feel-good" books that you won't want to end. If you enjoy contemporary YA at all, give Going Vintage a try. You won't be sorry.
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