Teen Girl With a Satchel

Between visually representing Othello, discussing the difference between ‘A Serious Comedy For Trivial People’ and ‘A Trivial Comedy For Serious People’ and and writing reports on whether living in the country affects how teens consume media, I have somehow managed (using what my mother calls “extreme procrastination”) to keep up to date with what else is going on in the world of teen. Or in my corner of it, anyway.

I have always been an avid consumer of media, but at times have found it hard to relate to the content of magazines, particularly growing up in a coastal village and small rural towns. I surveyed many of my peers for my senior geography project, and the results were overwhelmingly the same: they feel where they live alienates them from the mainstream media world.

Many responses I received spoke of how they feel that journalists do not understand what it’s like to live in a rural area, especially a very isolated one. It’s one thing to have the internet and read magazines, but if you feel that you are not being spoken to or understood, your interest is going to wane. Comparing the consumption levels of my rural peers to those of my city friends found that readership levels are much lower in the country.

But it’s not just magazines we can sometimes feel isolated from; it’s also movies, TV shows and books, which is why when I picked up A Straight Line To My Heart by Bill Codon last month, and found it was set in a rural town, much like the one I left last year, it was love at first read. I knew that Tiff was my kind of protagonist from the opening paragraph:

"There's nothing quite as good as folding up into a book and shutting the world outside. If I pick the right one I can be beautiful, or fall in love, or live happily ever after. Maybe even all three."

Tiff and her best friend Kayla have just finished Year Twelve and are being faced with the scary thought of having to enter The Real World. Tiff gets work experience at the local paper and has her fingers crossed that it will lead to a job, while Kayla just wants a job, a future. Throw in Davey, the first boy who's ever paid her any attention, and Tiff's in for a hell of a week.

Tiff's first person narration was so relatable it drew me straight into the story, and I didn't want to leave. Initially you might think Tiff and Kayla are just two regular teens, but as the book continues you find out more about their stories, you discover that maybe they're a little rough, and a little bit from the wrong side of the tracks.

What this story does brilliantly, however, is show that despite their backgrounds, they still have hopes, dreams, and fears, and at the end of the day, they just want their happily ever after. A Straight Line To My Heart is a Young Adult book without any supernatural themes (finally!) that can be enjoyed by everyone. If you get the chance, read it.

Demi Lovato, who I have long looked up to, has released her first single post-breakdown. “Skyscraper", is an inspirational tune about overcoming demons and those who push you down. I will admit, it made me sob on first listen. Every girl, whether you like Demi or not, should listen to it and remember that rising like a Skyscraper is a lot better than letting people step all over your rubble. Demi’s new album, Unbroken, is set to be released in America on the 20th of this month.

Georgie writes at Frangipani Princess


camillapeffer said...

I have this funny vision of you dressing up as a black man to "visually represent" Othello (was that in poor taste?)

I never figured you were from the country! As a Sydney born and bred girl I love hearing about girls from the smaller cities making their way in the world and entering "the big smoke".

I think you ought to do a post on your first impressions of Sydney!

frangipani princess said...

Camilla, I'm country born and bred (well, coastal born, and mostly country bred, though I've never really fit the 'rural' stereotype) but our family and closest family friends have always been from Sydney, so it's kind of been like a second home to me. I'm up there at least once a month when school permits. Sydney is brilliant (as is Melbourne, where I seem to be just as often as Sydney!) and I cannot wait to head up there for university at the end of next year!
My parents loved their time in Sydney in their twenties, but decided, as teachers, that the country would be a better place to raise their children and live. Not sure I agree with them, but I have learnt a lot living here!