Thursday, October 30, 2008

In which Jane develops a romance novel heroine complex

In a nod to my fondness for pioneer novels, I reviewed Jennifer L. Holm's Boston Jane: An Adventure back in September. My new library in my new town has book two in the series, Boston Jane: Wilderness Days, so of course I had to immediately check it out.

Book two didn't spark my fancy quite as much--mostly because Jane developed several romance novel heroine complexes. She and the male lead had a Big Misunderstanding, which seriously, if they just communicated a teeny, tiny bit, would be resolved within seconds. This book alone shows the importance of good communication to create a healthy relationship. (True, this book is geared to the YA audience, but still, Jane and Jehu, the male lead, had the dumbest misunderstandings. Just freakin' TALK to each, Jane and Jehu!) As it is a middle school YA novel, there isn't much romantic action at all. There's just more talk and no action.

The plot was a bit scattered and a large part of it was based on Jane's feelings--more character than plot driven. Still, there was plenty of pioneer grit and gristle in the book, with the promise of more to come in the third one. from reading this entry you may think I didn't like this book. I did like it; Jane just annoyed me with her HUGE assumptions and failure to listen/talk/be reasonable--which, hey, we've all encountered those heroines in various romance novels. I just hope the third book, Boston Jane: The Claim, has a more consistent and likeable Jane in it.

Rating: 6.5/10


Ms. Yingling said...

My students love this whole series. There were times that I didn't like parts as well as others, but in general, I liked the series.

rachel said...

It's definitely a fun series to introduce students to a less-studied part of American history--the Pacific Northwest.