The Year My Parents Ruined My Life
by Martha Freeman
Actually, I didn't finish reading this book. I got halfway through and decided it was garbage and it would be a waste of my time to finish it. I was the second parent to review this for our school library, and the first person rejected it with a solid "no." Now I know why. Shall I enlighten you?
1) It's poorly written. It's written from a third-person limited perspective, with the narration relating to the thoughts of the 6th-grade protagonist. However, it reads like it's actually first-person and written by a 6th grader. It's awful. The characters and motivations are ridiculously unbelievable.
2) The protagonist is a spoiled brat who cares nothing for her family or their happiness, and is only lost in thoughts of the boyfriend she leaves behind (she is only in 6th grade, for heaven sake!) when the family moves, and wishes only to sabotage everything and run away (which was does, apparently, though I didn't get that far).
3) Can you say "loose morals?" The mother's normal attire is (her own daughter's description) tight mini skirts which she wears to work. Huh? Not to mention the kids at the elementary school regularly smoke in the bathroom and no one makes a fuss about it as if it's normal, and the main character "makes-out" with her much older boyfriend who she is worried will "cheat on her" (what does "cheating" mean to her, one wonders). I could go on but I'm too disgusted.
It's just not appropriate for elementary school children... or any children, for that matter. This book belongs in the trash, and certainly not in our school library.