So I was in the Laundromat yesterday, and I was thinking about how i live now, which just happened to be what I was talking about in my last post. I was thinking about the relationship in the book that is freaking out some readers and how I didn't think it was necessary to include it at all.
And then I thought that maybe how i live now is another example of a book that tries to be about too many things. I've noticed this happening in other books like Al Capone Does My Shirts, and a few others I can't recall right now.
how i live now is about a teenager with anorexia who is thrown into a dangerous, intense situation in which she becomes responsible for a younger person. That is a very compelling story line all by itself. The book didn't need the relationship that appears to be a stumbling block for some younger readers. That relationship was big enough and intense enough to be in another book.
But both elements were thrown together in the same story. It's as if the author--and the editor--couldn't pick one situation to create a story line around. They couldn't make up their minds, they couldn't stay on task.
As I've said before, I've been noticing this happening for a while now. I can't say I've been aware of it in adult novels.