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Minor Spoilers for Ready or Not and major spoilers for All American Girl

Today, I read Ready or Not by Meg Cabot, it is the sequel to All American Girl*.

I chose to re-read Ready or Not, despite it having been relegated to the (very small) pile of books I plan to give away, because yesterday I picked up All American Girl for a light read. Upon finishing All American Girl I figured I would give Ready or Not another chance before giving it away.

My recollection of Ready or Not was that it was no where near as good as All American Girl, a bit trashy, and obsessed with sex.

Upon re-reading, I agree with past Jocelyn that it is not as good as All American Girl, and that the main character, Sam, spends the whole book obsessing about whether or not to have sex with her boyfriend, David. I would reflect, however, that Ready or Not utilised suspense in the form of a huge misunderstanding between Sam and David. Despite Sam being the sole narrator, it is obvious to the audience that she is working herself into a tizzy over one conversation in which she presumes David is using a euphemism when, in actual fact, he is not.

‘Misunderstanding suspense’ is one of my least favourite tropes** and is why I have learnt not to stop watching an episode half way through lest I never return to the show. It also leads me to stay up well past my bedtime to ensure a book ends well.

I basically read Ready or Not in a day without a whole lot of effort (and no staying up late). I will still be giving it away and I wouldn’t recommend anyone read it. Just read All American Girl and pretend the story stops there.



*All American Girl is a book I enjoyed so much that the first time I finished it I immediately flipped back to the front and started reading again. Granted, I was on a long-haul flight with not much else to do. In regards to taste; I was also 17 at the time.

**After all the tropes that dehumanise people

Advice for Past Jocelyn

I picked up this idea from something Sally blogged and was further encouraged by the vlogbrothers sending advice to teenaged each other. The following advice is for 16 year old me. I have put it into 3 categories and the advice is roughly in the order I might have needed it:


When you break up with someone don’t immediately jump to a new person, especially a friend of the ex, you are only going to hurt everyone involved (including yourself).

Tell boys when you don’t like them. It isn’t that painful.

You don’t owe someone you flirt with anything. You are never required to go out with a boy just cos you flirted with him.

You deserve someone fabulous. Hold out.


Don’t go straight from High School to uni. Get a job or something before going to Theological College (bugger the arts degree).

Wear what you want when you get to uni. Don’t be scared to go into goth stores.

Actually don’t be scared to go into places. Apply for things, persist in finding the building you are looking for for those tryouts/lecture/whatever. Don’t just cry. Take a deep breath, if you are in the wrong place someone will redirect you.


You are actually really good at Italian, language learning is one of your skills.

I know you are in Tonga and it is hard to organise your semester 2 timetable but *don’t let* Mrs Lyons tell you you have to do Psych, hold out for year 10 Chem, it will make year 11 chem a lot more tolerable. Psych is totally unsuited to your study-style.

Talking about your study style, there is a great saying: “Just write crap, you can edit crap, you can’t edit a blank page”. Professors/teachers would much prefer you hand something, ANYTHING, in so they can attempt to pass you. That is preferable to them than you avoiding insulting them by not handing in something crap. Let someone know when all your assignments are due and get them to hold you accountable to handing in a rough draft to them. Don’t be ashamed of rough drafts. You will hand things in not much better than a rough draft and get a decent mark. (I don’t recommend it as a habit though!)

Ask Mr Mortan for help in Spesh maths. Actually, go to the coordinators at the start of the year and tell them they should split the class in two. 25 is too many people for a spesh class, get mum involved as well. This advice applies to all teachers, ASK QUESTIONS WHEN YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND!!!

Pride and Prejudice

I’ve been on a massive Pride and Prejudice binge lately. I’ve been watching the Lizzie Bennet Diaries (LBD) (and related blogs/tweets) as they come out, but that was moving too slowly for me so I watched the Keira Knightly movie (KK). That wasn’t detailed enough so I got a copy of the BBC version (BBC) and watched that. This got me to thinking about the different characters and who I liked better for their parts.

LBD. This Jane is sweet and pretty, she has a shy nature and you can understand how she is reserved and that Bingley (or Bing Lee in her case) would be a little unsure that she was interested.
Actually I also like the KK Jane. What I don’t like is the BBC’s Jane. Seriously? I mean she does shy and not-giving-away-feelings well enough, but how can one argue that she is more beautiful than Elizabeth? The only one of her sisters (in her version) that she is arguably more beautiful than is Mary. This, I imagine, is partially due to the stupid haircut she wears. But Lizzie manages to pull off basically the same hairdo.

KK. I love the strawberry blonde hair and the happy bemused look on his face all the time. His look would go well with that of LBD’s jane and they could have cute little red-headed children.

BBC. It is a hard decision, but in the end Jennifer Ehle does a fantastic job, she is subtle but also a little sassy.

KK. It may be contriversal but I am going to go there. I actually like Matthew Macfadyen’s portrayal of Darcy, he is proud and is attractive more in the way that I would imagine Darcy to be. I know that Firth is the quintessential Darcy, but he is just a little too pretty I think.

Mr Collins:
KK. Collins in the BBC version is just tooooooo slimey and the LBD version is way too likeable even though he is a rude, pompous arse.

KK. The BBC version has cast Julia Sawalha who I have two problem’s with: 1) I can’t separate her from her role in Ab Fab and 2) she was 25 when she was playing the 15 year old and I find it hard to believe her as a teenager. The LBD’s Lydia is just TOOOOOOOOOOOO Anoying. Totes frustrating amirite? Jena Malone does a great job of playing flighty Lydia who only cares about officers and doesn’t realise that her marriage is not exactly on the up and up.

LBD. I will illustrate my choice with a choice of videos:
If you only have 20 seconds:
If you have 5 minutes:

I realise I have left a few characters out, however I am continuing my binge. The other night I watched Bride and Prejudice and am going to watch Lost in Austen with some of my spare time this week. This may influence my decisions. I will probably go back and watch bits of the three adaptions I’ve taken my list from so far so as to refresh my memory a little. I have a particular Charlotte in my head but can’t for the life of me remember which version she is from!

So stay tuned for more favourites!

Chem Test acids/bases

You say
release your soul
But I
vent my pain
and so
It eats
at me

– written c. August 2002. Titled ‘Chem Test ¬†acids/bases’.¬†


I was sorting through my old things today so as to fit them in my teeny tiny apartment (more on that later), and I found some poetry and stories I had written as a teenager. So this continues the ‘things I found’ series:

Cecil is
my sis.
I love
beyond imagination.
My Favourite
10 year old.
Cecil is
my sis.

Somebody that I used to Know.

my sister wrote a blog post today. It started off with “All yesterday I had this funny feeling.” and I immediately knew what was coming next. I knew what this was a post about. I knew that it was that time of year, and I was surprised to be reading about it first on her blog, rather than on facebook. It was facebook that told her what her funny feeling was. Josh would have been 23 yesterday. He died 5 years ago, 3 weeks after his 18th birthday.

Joshie is one of the reasons I work in Road Safety. I see the effect his death had on his family and the entire community and how grief changes and, as Emmeline said, “the sadness has become a melancholy that is a part of our lives”. Just the other day at a workshop someone was talking about aquaplaning and I was able to mention Josh’s story without tearing up. And perhaps that is because I had put on a role – someone who has been effected by road trauma but is *doing* something about it rather than being a puddle on the floor. Or perhaps I have become desensitised by my work.

But I didn’t feel desensitised tonight when I read Emmeline’s blog. I broke into tears as quietly as is appropriate when you get home at 11 and your kind aunties* are asleep in the next room with the door ajar. Then I was lost as to what to do with this sudden unexpected emotion so late at night. I didn’t wish to vaguebook, or even post something explicit on facebook. No disrespect to those that do, but for me that isn’t the right way to honour my feelings. I was flipping through facebook, more looking for something to distract me, or for an appropriate segue into something else when I saw that dad had posted a coover of Gotye’s “somebody that I used to know”. I youtubed the original and it was exactly what I needed. I thought there were more lyrics that expressed how I felt. But I googled the lyrics (I didn’t watch the video, in case it was not what I needed), and they are totally off track.
However the following lines struck me:

The first line:
Now and then I think of when we were together
and the last line of the chorus:
Now you’re just somebody that I used to know

because that is how I feel. I no longer know Josh, he is now somebody that I used to know. Somebody that I loved dearly and at one time was like a younger brother to me. That was no longer the case when he died, and I was overseas when it happened. Which I think adds to my feeling that I no longer know him, like maybe he moved to Sydney and no longer keeps in touch.

*Kind aunties** cos they let me stay at their house for 6 weeks while I find one of my own

**sorry, I know you don’t like aunties.

A New Reading Blog

My sisters and I have begun a project to read through as many of these books as we can by the end of 2012. You can read about our attempts at our new blog here!

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