My first selection for Misfit Salon's June Reading Challenge is This Gorgeous Game by Donna Freitas (2010). Based on my personal twist to read books I wouldn't normally read, the story of Olivia, a talented seventeen-year-old girl, and the author/priest, Father Mark, who becomes obsessed with her, is a plot I'd usually avoid.
Amazingly, the overall plot isn't what I didn't like about the book.
The beginning of This Gorgeous Game:
"I KNOW I KNOW I KNOW I KNOW I SHOULD BE GRATEFUL. I SHOULD be grateful to have his attention. To have him take such an interest in me.
I should. I know I should.
I will. No, you are grateful, Olivia, I tell myself as if I am my self's imaginary friend, sitting across the table, giving advice. Start acting grateful then, she begs."
Anything about the above writing grate on your nerves? I discovered while reading this book that I have a strong personal aversion to the overuse of italicized words and whatever you call This. Bit. Of. Emphasis. Fluff. I don't know if Freitas hoped to use this style of writing as a way to emphasize the main character's youth, but it just Annoyed. Me. Period.
I also found the ending a bit rushed, and I could have used some more conflict and pages of writing at that point, as a reader. I don't want to say more in hopes of not providing a spoiler for anyone who plans to read the book.
Or maybe I just haven't recovered from the idea of Olivia actually thinking being raped by Father Mark would have been easier than being stalked because she would have had proof, could have gone to the authorities, etc. I can't begin to tell you how much that particular, albeit brief, bit offended me. I literally had to stop reading for a bit, trying to decide if the author or just the character is truly that misguided--okay, stupid, a word I hate and never use, is the actual word I thought at the time in place of misguided.
A Passion for Books & Real Life--keepin' it real and always giving you my true thoughts and feelings.
You can learn more at the author's blog here.
My overall personal rating of This Gorgeous Game is a C.