Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Annie on My Mind by Nancy Garden

Title: Annie on My Mind
Author: Nancy Garden
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Released: July 1982
Pages: 263 (Paperback)
Buy: Amazon UK / Amazon US
Add on Goodreads

 "If you don't put that ring on this minute, I'm going to take it back," Annie whispered in my ear. She leaned back, looking at me, her hands still on my shoulders, her eyes shining softly at me and snow falling, melting, on her nose. "Buon Natale," she whispered, "amore mio."

"Merry Christmas, my love," I answered.

From the moment Liza Winthrop meets Annie Kenyon at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, she knows there is something special between them. But Liza never knew falling in love could be so wonderful... or so confusing.

I got suggested this book by one of my good friends, and as soon as I saw the blurb, I knew I had to read it. I'm a massive procrastinator, and one of my favourite topics to rant about is how people treat the LGBT community. This book explores the negative criticism perfectly, and I think it is one of the best books explaining LGBT awareness.

I instantly fell in love with both the characters of  Liza and Annie. It's hard not to when I could relate so strongly to the both of them. Garden characterised both of them to be polar opposites - Liza, the main protagonist, was incredibly headstrong, and lead the story with such ease. However, Annie had such a wicked imagination that it was infectious, and this ying and yang effect created characters that anyone could relate to in some way, gay or not.

I've noticed that some LGBT books take the path of homosexuality being accepted in the community - however, Annie on My Mind took place a few decades back, when LGBT was a more taboo subject, and although I know a lot about negative attitudes towards it, this book gave me a very realistic perspective of it all. I don't really want to post spoilers, but that reaction - that of Liza's friends, of her family, or her teachers, of her school...Garden made it so real, and I couldn't help but cry at how unjust it was. Because even though this is a piece of fiction, it has actually happened to so many people. It was awful, but Garden captured that cruelty and misjudgment perfectly.

If you like the LGBT genre, or you just want to read someone's experiences of it, then this is definitely the book to pick up. This shows the harsh perspective of what it's like to be homosexual, and the discrimination they can face.
Rating: 3/5

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