Monday, January 14, 2008

The Secret Journey of Pauline Siddhartha

The Secret Journey of Pauline Siddhartha, by Edeet Ravel

YA/Canadian/Girl discovering herself humoursly

This is the third book in a trilogy, for which I have not read the first two. These are called The Thrilling Life of Pauline de Lammermoor and The Mysterious Adventures of Pauline Bovary. Pauline is our heroine, and also our first person narrator. The premise is that she has read a book on how to write a novel, and these are the novels she writes. They are basically diaries. This one is really quite funny. The fun comes from the reader being a bit more worldly than the narrator, so it needs to be read by teens who have some knowledge of the world. For example, in this adventure, Pauline is visiting with her activist grandmother in England. There she meets a young man who offers to teach her about the tantric buddist lifestyle. She gets caught up in this new way of being, having no idea that the boy is merely trying to seduce her. Hilarity ensues for the reader, who can see both viewpoints.

This is a very short read. I got through it in little more than an hour, most of which was on the noisy subway. But it is engaging and fun. I think it will resonate with teens. It is a little bit in the vein of an Alice, I think. Good fun, and I recommend this book, and likely the whole series.

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