From the Publisher
“Readers will instantly relate to funny, honest 15-year-old Georgia….This is a well-executed story, with a vivid narrator sure to win readers' hearts.” Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Readers will be drawn in by [Lowry's] ability to paint word pictures of the main character's innermost thoughts and feelings. After reading this quirky, fun novel, teens are sure to request Lowry's Guitar Highway Rose and Follow the Blue.” School Library Journal
“Lowry has created a wonderful character in Georgia, whose narrative ranges from hilarious to poignant as it relates familiar growing pains….A compelling, enjoyable read with a complex, irresistible protagonist who will engage many readers.” Booklist
Readers will instantly relate to funny, honest 15-year-old Georgia. "I like to think of myself as a brilliant creative person, but sometimes I just feel like a sad lonely girl with a big bum." Lowry (Guitar Highway Rose) covers familiar teen angst territory, from Georgia's tension with her single mom to a seemingly unrequited crush, but she handles the topics tenderly and realistically. Georgia's infatuated with the lead singer for Natural Affinity, and takes a string of bad jobs so she can fly to one of the band's concerts (one job comes to a sudden end when she angrily hits her manager with a loaf of bread). But when she starts working at a grocery store, she falls for a cute clerk who reads her his poem about toilet paper. Meanwhile tension with her mother ebbs and flows, but gradually comes to a head when Georgia learns a secret about her long dead father. Throughout, she writes lists in her diary, full of funny things such as "10 things you can do with a sausage besides eating it" and small heartbreaks (on the list "Ways in which I am like my mother" she writes: "We both miss the same man"). Ultimately, this is a well-executed story, with a vivid narrator sure to win readers' hearts. Ages 12-up. (Mar.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
This book has a good premise and tries to realistically portray a girl's life. Some will be able to relate to the many hurdles and triumphs in Georgia's life, but for many it will not strike a chord. Lowry, in her attempt to depict a normal life, has many small plot lines intermixed in the story, some of which end in predictable cliches that thankfully don't seem overly cheesy. It is inspiring that Georgia changes her overweight view of herself, yet the book relies too heavily on this aspect and relates many plot lines to Georgia's weight problem. VOYA CODES: 2Q 3P J S (Better editing or work by the author might have warranted a 3Q; Will appeal with pushing; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12). 2006, Holiday House, 179p., Ages 12 to 18.
Rebecca Moreland, Teen Reviewer
Children's Literature - Paula McMillen
This reissue of Lowry's book, originally published as With Lots of Love from Georgia, is a teenager's coming-of-age story with a ‘down under' flavorthe summer break, when the plot of this story gets underway, begins with Christmas holiday! The book shares a number of elements with Lowry's two previous books about adolescent females. Red-headed fifteen-year-old Georgia fills her journal with inventive and wacky lists, has what she perceives to be an intrusive and controlling mother, and follows the path of abstention in real life in spite of lustful fantasiesaspects shared with Guitar Rose Highway. Like her counterpart in Follow the Blue, Georgia sometimes has to be the more grown-up party in the relationship with her parent, a widowed mother. She also faces the usual array of teen angst issuesappearance, insiders vs. outsiders in the school social order, unobtainable boyfriends, and shifting relationships with almost everybody else. Georgia's particular odyssey is focused on two themes: her obsessive concern about her weightwhich is held in tense counterbalance to her reliance on comfort foods to cope with the above mentioned issuesand her quest to earn enough money to attend a concert by her idol, rock star Jakob of Natural Affinity. The point of view is all Georgia's, and the voice is authentically teenaged, albeit peppered with Aussie colloquialisms. Although there is not much new in this story line, this is a likable character, alternately sympathetic toward others and totally self-absorbed, who will resonate with many female readers.
School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up-This story is made up of a series of journal entries and lists compiled by 15-year-old Georgia, who makes several unsuccessful attempts to earn the $500 she needs to hear her favorite group, Natural Affinity. She lives in Golden Bay, Australia, so she'll need a lot if she's going to fly to Melbourne for the May Day concert. Meanwhile, she struggles with her weight and appearance, obsesses over a particular guy, and tries to maintain a halfway decent relationship with her single mom. Lowry is also a poet, which is evident in her different styles of writing and colorful prose. Readers will be drawn in by her ability to paint word pictures of the main character's innermost thoughts and feelings. After reading this quirky, fun novel, teens are sure to request Lowry's Guitar Highway Rose (2003) and Follow the Blue (2004, both Holiday House).-Kathryn Childs, Morris Mid/High School, OK Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Weight-conscious Georgia is the Australian, 15-year-old equivalent of England's Bridget Jones. In an effort to earn enough money for concert tickets, she spends her summer holiday working a series of jobs, none of which she enjoys. Meanwhile, she attempts to understand her single mother, obsesses over boys and endures the ups and downs of friendship with her pal, Mel. To help sort out her feelings-and break the tedium of an uneventful holiday-Georgia begins making lists of random topics such as "things to do while watching a sunset," "ways in which I am like my mother" and "stuff I don't like that everyone else likes." Although not much else about this story is unique, Georgia's lists are cleverly wrought and typify a teenager's response to understanding who she is and defining her place in the world. Amid changes in her life, Georgia remains a likable heroine who stays true to herself. Cherie Whytock or Sue Limb fans will enjoy this latest addition to the ever-growing number of chick-lit offerings for teen girls. (Fiction. YA)