“Weetzie Bat” by Francesca Lia Block

29 Jan


"Weetzie Bat" is considered a classic of modern young adult literature. This short novel, written in 1989, uses a style called magical realism, which may or may not be familiar to you. Basically, there are magical or fantastical elements and rich, colorful images woven through a story that deals with very real issues, including death, grief, love, forgiveness, and even AIDS. Whether you ultimately enjoy this novel will probably turn on how you feel about the sort of other-worldly, fairy tale images and descriptions that form the basis of this novel.

As for the story, it essentially follows the life of older teenager Weetzie Bat in Los Angeles as she becomes friends with the cool, mohawked Dirk; falls in love with her dream man, My Secret Agent Lover Man (that's his name — really!); moves into a small cottage with Dirk, his boyfriend Duck, and My Secret Agent Lover Man; and goes on to star in My Secret Agent Lover Man's movies. Eventually, the family grows to include two children, Witch Baby (yes, Witch Baby) and Cherokee.

There is something sweet about the themes of acceptance, forgiveness, and family in this novel. To be honest, not very much happens in the story, but, for some, the lush, whirlwind descriptions of food, settings, clothes, and cars may be enough. Please note that although this is a short novel, it is definitely geared toward older teens.

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Posted by on January 29, 2007 in Uncategorized


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