Thursday, April 29, 2010
Review: The Aqua Net Diaries
High school in middle America in the 1980s: this is Jennifer Niven's memoir of high school in suburban Indiana. Like any other high school student Jennifer angsts over her weekend dates, spends hours on the phone, and is profoundly embarrassed by her parents. She spends time dreaming up ways to cut school and acquire alcohol. In other words, this is the story of an entirely unremarkable high school experience. Most of us will find plenty in Niven's narrative that sounds familiar. Reading this book is quite a bit like reminiscing about high school with one's old friends at a reunion. That said, I'm not sure that there's anything more to this book. I absolutely loved Niven's novel, Velva Jean Learns to Drive, but I was disappointed in this memoir. The memoir was neither as deep nor as interesting as the novel. This is a light and entertaining read, but there's not a lot more to it.
Jennifer Niven, The Aqua Net Diaries: Big Hair, Big Dreams, Small Town (Gallery, 2010) ISBN: 1416954295