Review: firstname.lastname@example.org by KE Payne
This book being outside my comfort-zone, I wasn’t sure what to expect. Now, after reading Me@you.com I’m not so sure what to think.
Imogen is your average 18 year-old girl. She has a cute boyfriend, two loyal best friends, an annoying little sister and a massive pile of homework. But when she discovers an internet board of her favourite series, Lovers & Sinners, she soon becomes addicted to talking to her digital friends. She is starting to get feelings for the mysterious Fickle… I she falling in love with a girl she doesn’t even know?
I am accustomed to the weird and the paranormal. I feel comfortable talking about vampire brothers, worlds coming to an end, death-by-sex faerie people… But when it comes to stories taken from the “real” world I’m often at loss for words. This is exactly my problem with Me@you.com. This could be any girl, anywhere. This could be someone next door. The events in this book could have been real. It makes me wonder. Do we read to escape our own problems, or do we read to take a peek into someone else’s problems?
Philosophical musings aside, Me@you.com is an interesting book. It is written like some kind of internal monologue. This also includes the occasional “wanna” and “gonna”, and a “FFS” thrown in for good measure. I might also want to warn you that this book is filled with British slang. I was slightly confused when Immy was “eating her tea” (her dinner, it turns out) and other slightly unusual turns of phrase. It took me a while to get used to; but Immy has a pleasant voice, and after a while I didn’t notice the quirks any more.
This definitely isn’t a light read. It is captivating, urging you on to continue reading, but you won’t read this book smiling. At least I know I didn’t. Immy is a troubled girl. She has some pretty hard stuff to get through. It is not easy to accept that you are, and always have been gay. And that you have never had feelings for your boyfriend. That you’ve been keeping up appearances, just because that’s how things go. Ms Payne did an excellent job in bringing all these conflicting thoughts to live. The confusion and denial were brilliantly done. Immy’s thoughts could have come straight from some girl’s diary.
This is where the big weakness of this book lies, though. Ms Payne will make you feel Immy’s pain (no pun intended) and her confusion. This makes for a slightly… depressing read, so to say. Even though there are small light bulbs of hope, it just isn’t enough to lighten up this novel. I would have liked some more comical relief, just enough to keep it going.
The three star rating is mainly caused by the ending of this book. I don’t want to give anything away – so if you’re interested you can read the very mild spoiler (highlight to read it):when Immy finally finds true love, I expected a big finale. Some good making out, or something equally passionate. But I was quite disappointed in that. I only got a small, hey, this will probably work out. It just wasn’t enough to balance out the journey towards this true love.
Overall I think Me@you.com is an interesting book. If you like contemporary young-adult, are interested in lesbian relationships, or maybe dating through the internet, I certainly think you could give this a try.
Immy is a normal 18 year old, with a normal life, a normal family and a normal boyfriend. But when she finds herself falling for a girl on an internet message board, a girl she knows only as the mysterious Fickle, her so-called normal life is suddenly turned on its head.
As her relationship with Fickle develops into more than just friendship, Immy finds another message board friend, the sweet and lovely Joey, the perfect person to confide in. But can Joey stay out of it when she starts to fall for Immy herself? Things are about to get complicated…
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