Just Friends

Just Friends

by Norma Klein
     
 

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Everyone thinks of Isabel and Stuart as "just friends." So it's no big deal when their pals Ketti, Lois and Andria decide that Smart will be Ketti's next "love" target.

No one suspects the truth: that Iz has always thought of Stuart as hers, and that it's just a matter of time before they fall in love and live happily ever after. As far as Iz is concerned

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Overview

Everyone thinks of Isabel and Stuart as "just friends." So it's no big deal when their pals Ketti, Lois and Andria decide that Smart will be Ketti's next "love" target.

No one suspects the truth: that Iz has always thought of Stuart as hers, and that it's just a matter of time before they fall in love and live happily ever after. As far as Iz is concerned they've been engaged since first grade.

But Iz needs ammunition to win Stuart away from Ketti — and it arrives in the shape of Gregory Arrington, a fellow poet and all-around romantic klutz. Much to her horror, Gregory adores her. And sensible, honest, kind-hearted Iz could never bring herself to lead Gregory even if it would make Stuart jealous...or could she?

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In this posthumous novel, Klein has once again created an accurate and amusing portrayal of the sophisticated world of privileged New York teens. Isabel and Stuart have been best friends since childhood, and Isabel has always believed that this friendship will eventually grow into a romance. In a perverse effort to hide these feelings, Isabel plays matchmaker by suggesting that her sexy friend Ketti pursue Stuart. Soon Ketti and Stuart are happily involved and Isabel is desperately jealous. Fired by envy and a spirit of adventure, Isabel starts dating Gregory, a gangling classmate who is obviously smitten by her. Klein's fluid writing allows Isabel's inner dialogue to expand into an intricately plotted novel, peopled with memorable characters. Ages 12-up. (Mar.)
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up-- Isabel and Stuart have been friends since nursery school. This year they are seniors, and while Isabel longs for their friendship to blossom into romance, Stuart has a relationship going with her friend, Ketti. Isabel finds consolation in Gregory who, while poetic and an intellectual match, is gawky and far more intensely involved than she. Klein takes this romantic formula plot and dissects the emotions and events with straightforward honesty. There are few ``typicals'' here. Each character seems real and individual, from the best friend, who seems to be discovering that her early lesbian experiences matter to her, to Stuart's mother's ex-boyfriend, who pines to be forgiven for his philandering. In this first-person narrative, Klein reveals the souls of her characters in the details and dialogue, much like Isabel's father's hobby of photographing pieces of faces, such as eyes, nostrils, ears, etc. Klein never sidesteps the issues or questions that confront her young adults' first journeys into the realms of love and sexuality. This is a portrayal of a young woman as sex gradually enters her world. Intelligent and realistic, Isabel's choices are not always exemplary, but are always understandable. This book is an 80s update (or 90s?) of Blume's Forever (Bradbury, 1975) . Gone is the gush of emotion and the detailed love scenes. Instead readers meet a wryly honest young woman who learns that love and friendship are the mainstays, and that sex is the icing. --Carol A. Edwards, East Central Regional Library, Cambridge, MN

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780679902133
Publisher:
Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
03/17/1990
Pages:
192
Age Range:
12 Years

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