Annie on My Mind

Annie on My Mind

by Nancy Garden

Paperback(First Edition)

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Overview

This groundbreaking book, first published in 1982, is the story of two teenage girls whose friendship blossoms into love and who, despite pressures from family and school that threaten their relationship, promise to be true to each other and their feelings.

From the moment Liza Winthrop meets Annie Kenyon at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, she knows there is something special between them. But Liza never knew falling in love could be so wonderful . . . or so confusing.

Of the author and the book, the Margaret A. Edwards Award committee said, "Nancy Garden has the distinction of being the first author for young adults to create a lesbian love story with a positive ending. Using a fluid, readable style, Garden opens a window through which readers can find courage to be true to themselves."

The 25th Anniversary Edition features a full-length interview with the author by Kathleen T. Horning, Director of the Cooperative Children's Book Center. Ms. Garden answers such revealing questions as how she knew she was gay, why she wrote the book, censorship, and the book's impact on readers – then and now.

"No single work has done more for young adult LGBT fiction than this classic about two teenage girls who fall in love." —School Library Journal

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780374400118
Publisher: Square Fish
Publication date: 02/20/2007
Edition description: First Edition
Pages: 272
Sales rank: 70,939
Product dimensions: 5.44(w) x 8.21(h) x 0.72(d)
Lexile: 1000L (what's this?)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

Nancy Garden is the author of young adult novels including The Year They Burned the Books and Endgame. She is also the author of the YA nonfiction book Hear Us Out!, as well as novels for children and the picture book Molly's Family. Garden was born in Boston, Massachusetts, and has lived most of her life in New England and New York. She spent her early adult years working in theater, doing office work, teaching, and editing. During that time, she wrote in the evenings, on weekends, and on vacations, as well as at odd moments while working. Now she writes as close to full-time as possible. When she isn't writing, visiting schools, or making speeches, she enjoys reading, gardening, hiking, the outdoors, and anything to do with dogs. She has received the Margaret A. Edwards Award, the Lambda Book Award and the Robert Downs Intellectual Freedom Award. She and her partner of over twenty years divide their time between small towns in Massachusetts and Maine.

Read an Excerpt

CHAPTER 1

Ms. Widmer, who taught English at Foster Academy, always said that the best way to begin a story is to start with the first important or exciting incident and then fill in the background.

So I'm going to start with the rainy Sunday last November when I met Annie Kenyon. I've wanted to be an architect since long before I could spell the word, so I've always spent a lot of time at museums. That day, to help focus my ideas for the solar house I was designing for my senior project, I went to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, to visit the Temple of Dendur and the American Wing.

The museum was so full of people I decided to start with the American Wing, because it's sometimes less crowded, especially up on the third floor where I wanted to go. And at first it seemed as if that was going to be true. When I got to the top of the stairs, everything was so quiet that I thought there might even be no one there at all — but as I started walking toward the colonial rooms, I heard someone singing. I remember I stood and listened for a minute and then went toward the sound, mostly out of curiosity, but also because whoever it was had a wonderful voice.

There was a girl about my age — seventeen — sitting at a window in one of the oldest colonial rooms, singing and gazing outside. Even though I knew that the only thing outside that window was a painted backdrop, there was something about the girl, the gray cape she was wearing, and the song she was singing, that made it easy to imagine "Plimoth" Plantation or Massachusetts Bay Colony outside instead. The girl looked as if she could have been a young colonial woman, and her song seemed sad, at least the feeling behind it did; I didn't pay much attention to the words.

After a moment or two, the girl stopped singing, although she still kept looking out the window.

"Don't stop," I heard myself saying. "Please."

The girl jumped as if my voice had frightened her, and she turned around. She had very long black hair, and a round face with a small little-kid's nose and a sad-looking mouth — but it was her eyes I noticed most. They were as black as her hair and they looked as if there was more behind them than another person could possibly ever know.

"Oh," she said, putting her hand to her throat — it was a surprisingly long, slender hand, in contrast to the roundness of her face. "You startled me! I didn't know anyone was there." She pulled her cape more closely around her.

"It was beautiful, the singing," I said quickly, before I could feel self-conscious. I smiled at her; she smiled back, tentatively, as if she were still getting over being startled. "I don't know what that song was, but it sounded just like something someone would have sung in this room."

The girl's smile deepened and her eyes sparkled for just a second. "Oh, do you really think so?" she said. "It wasn't a real song — I was just making it up as I went along. I was pretending that I was a colonial girl who missed England — you know, her best friend, things like that. And her dog — she'd been allowed to take her cat but not her dog." She laughed. "I think the dog's name was something terribly original like Spot."

I laughed, too, and then I couldn't think of anything more to say.

The girl walked to the door as if she were going to leave, so I quickly said, "Do you come here often?" Immediately I felt myself cringe at how dumb it sounded.

She didn't seem to think it was dumb. She shook her head as if it were a serious question and said, "No. I have to spend a lot of time practicing, only that gets dull sometimes." She tossed her hair back over the shoulder of her cape. The cape fell open a little and I could see that under it she was wearing a very uncolonial pair of green corduroy jeans and a brown sweater.

"Practicing?" I asked. "Singing, you mean?"

She nodded and said in an offhand way, "I'm in this special group at school. We keep having to give recitals. Do you come here often?" She was standing fairly close to me now, leaning against the door frame, her head tipped a little to one side.

I told her I did and explained about wanting to be an architect and about the solar house. When I said I was going to the Temple of Dendur, she said she'd never seen it except from outside the museum, and asked, "Mind if I come?"

I was surprised to find that I didn't; I usually like to be by myself in museums, especially when I'm working on something. "No," I said. "Okay — I mean, no, I don't mind."

We walked all the way downstairs, me feeling kind of awkward, before I had the sense to say, "What's your name?"

"Annie Kenyon," she said. "What ... what's that?"

I said "Liza Winthrop" before I realized that wasn't what she'd asked. We'd just gotten to the medieval art section, which is a big open room with a magnificent choir screen — an enormous gold-painted wrought-iron grating — running across the whole back section. Annie stood in front of it, her eyes very bright.

"It's from a Spanish cathedral," I said, showing off. "1668 ..."

"It's beautiful," Annie interrupted. She stood there silently, as if in awe of the screen, and then bowed her head. Two or three people coming in glanced at her curiously and I tried to tell myself it was ridiculous for me to feel uneasy. You could walk away, I remember thinking; you don't know this person at all. Maybe she's crazy. Maybe she's some kind of religious fanatic.

But I didn't walk away, and in a couple of seconds she turned, smiling. "I'm sorry," she said as we left the room, "if I embarrassed you"

"That's okay," I said.

Even so, I led Annie fairly quickly to the Hall of Arms and Armor, which I usually go through on my way to the temple. The Hall is one of my favorite parts of the museum — one is greeted at its door by a life-sized procession of knights in full armor, on horseback. The first knight has his lance at the ready, pointed straight ahead, which means right at whoever walks in.

Annie seemed to love it. I think that's one of the first things that made me decide I really did like her, even though she seemed a little strange. "Oh — look!" she exclaimed, walking around the procession. "Oh — they're wonderful!" She walked faster, flourishing an imaginary lance, and then began prancing as if she were on horseback herself.

Part of me wanted to join in; as I said, I've always loved those knights myself, and besides, I'd been a King Arthur nut when I was little. But the other part of me was stiff with embarrassment. "Annie," I began, in the warning voice my mother used to use when my brother and I got too exuberant as children. But by then Annie had pretended to fall off her horse, dropping her lance. She drew an imaginary sword so convincingly I knew I was admiring her skill in spite of myself, and then when she cried, "En garde! Stand and fight or I'll run you through!" I knew I wasn't going to be able to keep from smiling much longer. "If you do not fight me, knight," she said, "you will rue the day that ever you unhorsed me here in this green wood!"

I had to laugh then, her mood was so catching. Besides, by then I'd noticed that the only other people around were a couple of little boys at the opposite end of the Hall. In the next minute I completely stopped resisting. I imagined a horse and leapt down from it, crying in my best King Arthur style, "I will not fight an unhorsed knight and me mounted. But now that I am on the ground, you will not live to tell the tale of this day's battle!" I pretended to throw aside my lance and draw a sword, too.

"Nor you!" cried Annie with a lack of logic that we laughed about later. "Have at you, then!" she shouted, swiping at me with her sword.

In another minute we were both hopping in and out of the procession of knights, laying about with our imaginary swords and shouting chivalrous insults at each other. After about the third insult, the little boys left the other end of the Hall and came over to watch us.

"I'm for the one in the cape!" one of them shouted. "Go, Cape!"

"I'm not," said his friend. "Go, Raincoat!"

Annie and I caught each other's eyes and I realized that we were making a silent agreement to fight on till the death for the benefit of our audience. The only trouble was, I wasn't sure how we were going to signal each other which one of us was going to die and when.

"Here — what's going on here? Stop that, you two, this instant — old enough to know better, aren't you?" I felt a strong hand close around my shoulder and I turned and saw the uniform of a museum guard topped by a very red, very angry face.

"We're terribly sorry, sir," Annie said, with a look of such innocence I didn't see how anyone could possibly be angry at her. "The knights are so — so splendid! I've never seen them before — I got carried away."

"Harrumph!" the guard said, loosening his hold on my shoulder and saying again, "Old enough to know better, both of you." He glared at the two little boys, who by now were huddled together, mouths wide open. "Don't let this give you any ideas," he roared after them as they scurried off like a pair of frightened field mice. When they were gone, the guard scowled at us again — his forehead scowled, that is, but his eyes didn't look angry. "Darn good fight," he grunted. "Ought to do Shakespeare in the Park, you two. But no more," he said, shaking his finger. "Not here — understand?"

"Oh, yes, sir," Annie said contritely, and I nodded, and we stood there practically holding our breaths as he lumbered away. The second he was gone, we both burst out laughing.

"Oh, Liza," Annie said, "I don't know when I've had so much fun."

"Neither do I," I said truthfully. "And, hey, guess what? I wasn't even embarrassed, except right at the beginning."

Then a funny thing happened. We looked at each other, really looked, I mean, for the first time, and for a moment or two I don't think I could have told anyone my name, let alone where I was. Nothing like that had ever happened to me before, and I think — I know — it scared me.

It was a bit longer before I could speak, and even then all I could say was, "Come on — the temple's this way."

We went silently through the Egyptian section, and I watched Annie's face as we walked into the Sackler Wing and she saw the Temple of Dendur, with the pool and open space in front of it. It's a sight that stuns most people, and it still stuns me, even though I've been there many times. It's the absence of shadows, I think, and the brightness — stark and pure, even on a day as rainy as that one was. Light streams in through glass panels that are as open as the sky and reflects from the pool, making the temple's present setting seem as vast and changeable as its original one on the river Nile must have been thousands of years ago.

Annie gasped as soon as we walked in. "It's outdoors!" she said. "Like it, I mean. But — but exactly like it." She threw out her arms as if embracing all of it, and let out her breath in an exasperated sigh, as if she were frustrated at not being able to find the right words.

"I know," I said; I'd never felt I'd found the right words, either — and Annie smiled. Then, her back very straight, she walked slowly around the pool and up to the temple as if she were the goddess Isis herself, inspecting it for the first time and approving.

When she came back, she stood so close to me our hands would have touched if we'd moved them. "Thank you," she said softly, "for showing me this. The choir screen, too." She stepped back a little. "This room seems like you." She smiled. "Bright and clear. Not somber like me and the choir screen."

"But you're ..." I stopped, realizing I was about to say beautiful — surprised at thinking it, and confused again.

Annie's smile deepened as if she'd heard my thought, but then she turned away. "I should go," she said. "It's getting late."

"Where do you live?" The words slipped out before I could think much about them. But there didn't seem any reason not to ask.

"Way uptown," Annie said, after hesitating a moment. "Here ..." She pushed her cape back and groped in a pocket, pulling out a pencil stub and a little notebook. She scribbled her address and phone number, tore the page off, and handed it to me. "Now you have to give me yours."

I did, and then we just sort of chatted as we walked back through the Egyptian section and outside into the rain. I don't remember what we said; but I do remember feeling that something important had happened, and that words didn't matter much.

In a few more minutes, Annie was on a crosstown bus, and I was heading in the opposite direction to get the IRT subway home to Brooklyn. I was halfway home before I realized I hadn't done any thinking about my solar-house project at all.

CHAPTER 2

The next day, Monday, was warm, more like October than November, and I was surprised to see that there were still leaves left on the trees after the rain the day before. The leaves on the street were almost dry, at least the top layer of them, and my brother Chad and I shuffled through them as we walked to school. Chad's two years younger than I, and he's supposed to look like me: short, square, and blue-eyed, with what Mom calls a "heart-shaped face."

About three years after Mom and Dad were married, they moved from Cambridge, Massachusetts, where MIT is, to Brooklyn Heights, just across from lower Manhattan. The Heights isn't at all like Manhattan, the part of New York that most people visit — in many ways it's more like a town than a city. It has more trees and flowers and bushes than Manhattan, and it doesn't have lots of big fancy stores, or vast office buildings, or the same bustling atmosphere. Most of the buildings in the Heights are residential — four or five-story brownstones with little back and front gardens. I've always liked living there, although it does have a tendency to be a bit dull in that nearly everyone is white, and most people's parents have jobs as doctors, lawyers, professors — or VIP's in brokerage firms, publishing houses, or the advertising business.

Anyway, as Chad and I shuffled through the leaves to school that Monday morning, Chad was muttering the Powers of Congress and I was thinking about Annie. I wondered if I'd hear from her and if I'd have the nerve to call her if I didn't. I had put the scrap of paper with her address on it in the corner of my mirror where I would see it whenever I had to brush my hair, so I thought I probably would call her if she didn't call me first.

Chad tugged my arm; he looked annoyed — no, exasperated.

"Huh?" I said.

"Where are you, Liza? I just went through the whole list of the Powers of Congress and then asked you if it was right and you didn't even say anything."

"Good grief, Chad, I don't remember the whole list."

"I don't see why not, you always get A's in everything. What's the point of learning something sophomore year if you're only going to forget it by the time you're a senior?" He shoved his hair back in the way that usually makes Dad say he needs a haircut, and picked up a double handful of leaves, cascading them over my head and grinning — Chad's never been able to stay mad at anyone very long. "You must be in love or something, Lize," he said, using the one-syllable nickname he has for me. Then he went back to my real name and chanted, "Liza's in love, Liza's in love ..."

Funny, that he said that.

By then we were almost at school, but I slung my book bag over my shoulder and pelted him with leaves the rest of the way to the door.

Foster Academy looks like an old wooden Victorian mansion, which is exactly what it was before it was made into an independent — private — school running from kindergarten through twelfth grade. Some of the turrets and gingerbready decorations on its dingy white main building had begun to crumble away since I'd been in Upper School (high school), and each year more kids had left to go to public school. Since most of Foster's money came from tuition and there were only about thirty kids per class, losing more than a couple of students a year was a major disaster. So that fall the Board of Trustees had consulted a professional fund raiser who had helped "launch" a "major campaign," as Mrs. Poindexter, the headmistress, was fond of saying. By November, the parents' publicity committee had put posters all over the Heights asking people to give money to help the school survive, and there were regular newspaper ads, and plans for a student recruitment drive in the spring. As a matter of fact, when I threw my last handful of leaves at Chad that morning, I almost hit the publicity chairman for the fund drive instead — Mr. Piccolo, father of one of the freshmen.

(Continues…)



Excerpted from "Annie on My Mind"
by .
Copyright © 1982 Nancy Garden.
Excerpted by permission of OPEN ROAD INTEGRATED MEDIA.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"Brings this classic of the genre to a whole new generation of readers."—Publishers Weekly "The body of adolescent literature has waited for this book a long time . . . Gut-level believable." - VOYA

"An eye-opener (maybe 'heart-opener' is a better term) . . . Just the thing to provoke some honest conversation." - The Milwaukee Journal

Customer Reviews

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Annie on My Mind 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 134 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This story was so amazing. I couldn't put it down! I got in so much trouble in school for reading it during class. This book was heart-warming, as well as breaking. It brought back emotions I have not felt in a while. This book helped me find stength in myself. We all have mountains to climb. This book helped me start heading toward the summit.
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
Nancy Garden's ANNIE ON MY MIND, originally published in 1982, was recently re-released. (It includes an interview with the author herself.)

The book represents an early example of realistic young adult fiction depicting a lesbian relationship between two high school seniors. It is still a fitting portrayal for today's teens.

Liza and Annie meet in a New York museum and develop a fast friendship. Both seem to realize there is something different about their relationship, but admitting that at the start is difficult for both. The story is told as Annie remembers it, and focuses mostly on her struggle to accept the facts she is learning about herself.

The book's first half takes the reader into the growing friendship between the girls. There is considerable time spent describing how they discover their common interests and the activities they find to spend time together. The girls come from different backgrounds - Liza attends a relatively sheltered, private school currently struggling with financial difficulties, while Annie attends public school and is faced with drugs, violence, and other social problems public schools must deal with both then and now.

As the girls' relationship develops, the plot becomes more involved in Liza's role as student council president and her school's struggle with a fund-raising campaign. Liza and Annie begin to accept the true direction of their friendship, and of course, as other people become aware, controversy surfaces. Will the admission of their gay lifestyle cause acceptance or abandonment by family and friends? Could their situation adversely affect a similar relationship between two teachers in Liza's private school?

ANNIE ON MY MIND delves into the acceptance of homosexuality. It seems there will always be two sides to this controversy, but the re-release of the book may ask readers to decide if things are changing as time passes. What really matters in love - what is "right" for those involved or what is perceived as "right" by those whose views may differ?
Amanda_Marie_Rhiannon More than 1 year ago
I just finished this book, and have given it off to let my best friend read it. I can't wait for it back because I know I'll read it again...and again...and again. It made me think of myself, that there will always be something to climb to be happy, but happiness does happen if you work for it. I loved it. It is a must read!
AdeleBecker More than 1 year ago
Liza and Annie are both great role models in that they love who they are, and are in a very healthy relationship. They have to deal with discrimination, homophobes, and shame, but they still pull through.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Nancy Garden¿s ANNIE ON MY MIND, originally published in 1982, was recently re-released. (It includes an interview with the author herself.) The book represents an early example of realistic young adult fiction depicting a lesbian relationship between two high school seniors. It is still a fitting portrayal for today¿s teens. Liza and Annie meet in a New York museum and develop a fast friendship. Both seem to realize there is something different about their relationship, but admitting that at the start is difficult for both. The story is told as Annie remembers it, and focuses mostly on her struggle to accept the facts she is learning about herself. The book¿s first half takes the reader into the growing friendship between the girls. There is considerable time spent describing how they discover their common interests and the activities they find to spend time together. The girls come from different backgrounds ¿ Liza attends a relatively sheltered, private school currently struggling with financial difficulties, while Annie attends public school and is faced with drugs, violence, and other social problems public schools must deal with both then and now. As the girls¿ relationship develops, the plot becomes more involved in Liza¿s role as student council president and her school¿s struggle with a fund-raising campaign. Liza and Annie begin to accept the true direction of their friendship, and of course, as other people become aware, controversy surfaces. Will the admission of their gay lifestyle cause acceptance or abandonment by family and friends? Could their situation adversely affect a similar relationship between two teachers in Liza¿s private school? ANNIE ON MY MIND delves into the acceptance of homosexuality. It seems there will always be two sides to this controversy, but the re-release of the book may ask readers to decide if things are changing as time passes. What really matters in love ¿ what is ¿right¿ for those involved or what is perceived as ¿right¿ by those whose views may differ? **Reviewed by: Sally Kruger, aka 'Readingjunky'
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was disappointed with Annie On My Mind. The narrative voice was stiff, and the language style, dialogue, and some of the plot ideas were so dated, I felt like I was reading something written in and set in the 1950s rather than the 70s or 80s. For example, the narrator loses her status as class president because she fails to report a peer for piercing other students' ears. The book was published in 1982. The author was a young lesbian herself in the 50s. I would love her to rewrite the book with a more authentic, updated narrative voice. In a world of crazy conservative anti-gay activism, lesbians need to be realistically represented so that today's young lesbians can identify.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read it as a high school student, and I re-read it as a high school teacher. It is a very bland and formulaic romance novel for young readers. It is a good read for youngsters with questions, but I don't think its destined to be a classic. It owes its popularity to the controversy surrounding it, rather than quality writing.
Guest More than 1 year ago
this book was awsome... it maded me relize who i am and was to be in the future...this book is for anyone...especially for ones who are quesstioning their sexuallity...it leaves knots in your stomach because of the pain they endure, but its a beautiful love story about love lust and pain
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is a must-read. I mean everyday at school I would read it, and try to hide what I was reading to my friends, it was soO gewd. But then one day I got caught by one of my close friends, just when I was about to finish. Yet, she didn't care that she saw it and she even wanted to read it herself! READ THIS BOOK, PLEASE!
Anonymous 7 months ago
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middleearthtraveller on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
One of the best love stories ever.
sshadoan on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Thank you, Nancy Garden, for tackling a taboo. However, I just can't get through this book, no matter how sweet it is.
the_awesome_opossum on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Annie on my Mind is a story of two seventeen-year-old girls in a relationship, and their struggle to find their identities as things fall apart when news of their relationship gets out. The writing and the story aren't spectacular - the characters are very flat and the relationship seems to blossom in a vacuum, with Liza (the narrator) essentially, unintentionally, forgetting the rest of her life in favor of Annie. However, this book was written in a more conservative time, and would have been a great emotional help to young LGBTQ teenagers.
dalmador95 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is one of those rare books that I won't give up. It was extraordinarily meaningful to me at an important time in my life. If you're an adult (or a savvy teen) you'll know where the story is going before it gets there, but it doesn't matter. You'll still be drawn in. Just like real life.
ewyatt on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Liza meets Annie and they strike up an immediate friendship. Liza, loves architecture and visiting museums. Annie is a great singer and actress. They quickly begin spending all the time together they can. When they share a kiss, they have to figure out what that means for them. For Liza, she hasn't thought much about if she is a lesbian. But the two must address the issue. At Foster, Liza's private school, Liza is the president of the student council and pressured to be a role model. When the girls' relationship is discovered, the headmistress decides to go on the offensive to rid the school of Liza and the teachers on faculty who are a lesbian couple. The novel is a beautiful love story told in flashbacks as Liza struggles to write Annie a letter the next year while they are apart at different colleges.
Jennanana on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Liza and Annie become best friends after a chance encounter at a museum. They go to different schools and come from very different families, but see each other regularly and grow a very tight bond. That bond eventually turns to more than friendship after a kiss, as Annie reveals that she believes herself to be a lesbian. Liza always thought she felt different from other girls, but never considered her sexual orientation to have anything to do with it. While house sitting for two of her female teachers, Liza makes the mistake of inviting Annie to play house with her and the two get into trouble with the school and parents. They get into a fight, decide to split, go to different colleges but soon realize that their love has endured and rekindle it at the end of the novel.
silenceiseverything on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I found Annie on My Mind to be a sweet and tender love story. I liked that neither Liza nor Annie looked like what people presume ALL lesbians look like: short hair, tomboyish, and more than a little butch. Good to Nancy Garden for not falling directly into the stereotype and showing that lesbians come in all shapes and sizes and don't fit into any one particular mold. Another thing I liked was that Annie on My Mind showed Liza and Annie slowly falling in love. Sure, they both realized that there was some spark between them, but they didn't automatically jump into the relationship. They became friends and gradually fell in love. That made it all the more sweet to me. All of that being said, while I liked Annie on My Mind, I didn't love it. I just didn't think the story was enough. I felt like more could have been added. I felt like something was missing to make it truly spectacular to me. I don't know what, though. I just felt like the book just sort of meandered along and it didn't leave me with any strong impression either way. I do feel that Annie On My Mind shows how far we've come when it comes to the tolerance of other people's sexuality, but it also shows how much farther we still have to go. There are still tons of people who react to homosexuality in a negative way, regardless of the fact that more people are informed on the subject. I do think that Annie on My Mind was a good starting point in that regard.
mcelhra on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Seventeen year old Liza first meets Annie at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The two become fast friends even though they are very different. Liza comes from an upper middle class family and goes to private school and hopes to go to MIT when she graduates. Annie comes from a lower middle class family and is a talented vocalist who attends public school and hopes to attend college at the University of California, Berkley. Their relationship quickly grows more and more intense and soon the girls share their first kiss. Annie and Liza are both confused by this and struggle with the possibility that they might be gay.The book is an exploration of the friendship and love between the two girls. It was originally published in 1982; it was fascinating to see how far we as a society have come with regard to attitudes about homosexuality. In many ways this book wasn't much different from any young adult novel about first love. In fact, when this book published it was the first of it kind - a young adult novel with homosexual protagonists that had a hopeful message.I listened to the audio version of this book, which included a recent interview with the author at the end. One of the things the interview asked her about was if the book had ever been banned in light of its controversial subject matter. She said the only place it had ever been banned was in Kansas City. Since I'm from the Kansas City are I found this particularly interesting and horrifying. I really enjoyed this book both as a young adult romance and as a piece of LGBT history.
Ynaffit27 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This was a pretty interesting book. It got better as the plot developed, but it was somewhat hard to get into. The book dealt with lesbian relationships in a respectable manner and really let you see into the insights of a different perspective.
sexy_librarian on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Teen romance is one of the most popular topics in young adult literature, but few cover the area of homosexual teen romance. Nancy Garden gives us a story of two young women falling in love for the first time, with all its excitement and worries and heart. Liza is a perfect student, head of the student council and well liked, though not popular. But when she meets Annie and finds herself enchanted by the girl¿s imagination, she does not know how to explain her feelings. They both know it¿s more than just friendship, they both want and need each other in a way that is more intense. When they realize what they are feeling is love, they must decide how it will affect their lives and the choices they must make.
traiecto on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Really light, easy read.Good read for those who can't understand how it really feels to be a teenager and discover love in a person of your same sex.Good for teenagers who haven't completely lost their innocence, and fall in love with a friend.Seems a bit outdated, read from a country with legal marriage, but it's good to remember what's like elsewhere. Still.
mdomsky on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Liza is student council president at her snobbish private school in New York, and has plans to go to MIT. However, the school is having financial problems, and the principal is cracking down on "delinquent" behavior for fear of the school's reputation. Liza loves her school, but feels unjustly persecuted for an ear piercing incident due to her prominent position in the student council. Then she meets a girl named Annie at a museum. She and Annie find relief from the stresses of their very different lives in each other's company. Their friendship begins to consume Liza's thoughts. One day, they kiss, and must face up to the fact that their friendship is more than just friendship. But in a time where homosexuality is only just beginning to be understood as something other than mental illness, they both stand to lose a lot if their love is discovered.
kethdurazh on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I would describe this novel the way that Liza describes Annie: magical. Annie on My Mind beautifully portrays the struggles of a high school student to both live up to others expectations and follow her own heart.Garden perfectly captures being swept up in a new romance and the effects it can have on ourselves and others. The gradual realizations of the characters about themselves parallel the discoveries real youths make about themselves at this point in their lives. Annie on My Mind is told from Liza's perspective as she forces herself to remember all the events of the previous year and tries to write a letter to Annie. These moments are particularly poignant; who hasn't found it difficult to express their sentiments after such a trying and awkward time? The shifts to the present are abrupt, however, do not interrupt the story, but rather facilitate the telling by emphasizing the powerful emotions Annie feels as she remembers past events. My largest problem with the story is the way the last events of the story Liza tells unfold. It seemed too neat for a real world solution with everything working out just they way it's supposed to. Garden uses prose that is both eloquent and simple making the novel accessible and powerful to the youth audience at which it is aimed. I would highly recommend this novel to teenagers as well as their parents. This book is one to which they can relate their experiences no matter what orientation. It is also a book which could help their family relate to what they are feeling.Overall this novel's lessons and message are wonderful. It is a book you won't be able to put down and one you'll want to pass on to others.
RavenWingedWolf on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
"Annie on my Mind" is a truely inspirational novel. It teaches its readers that they can love and be loved, no matter the gender. But the book also tells its readers that love is not all butterfly kisses and frolicking through the meadows. It show that there are still many people out there who discriminate against homosexual relationships.It did not take me long to read through and finish this book but as I read I could feel he emotions of the characters and found a little piece of myself hidden deep within the depths of the souls of the two main characters. By the end of the I felt the lonliness that Eliza felt and was near tears(weither joyful or sorrowful I cannot say in case thouse who have not finished stummble upon my comment).I hope to find more books with a genre similar to this novel and written just as well.
faunia on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
To be young and in love, with a female and to be out enough to embrace yourself and herself. I read this when I was younger and I haven't gotten my mind off of it. It sits on my self ready for the next reader. I loved it. The sharing in it.. wow... I'm a hopeless romantic and would love for this to have been my first experience.