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Book Review: The Tragedy Paper by Elizabeth LaBan

Tim Macbeth is a 17 year old new transfer to Irving boarding school. He is

    Knopf Books for Young Readers    Published Jan. 8, 2013         312 Pages
Knopf Books for Young Readers
Published Jan. 8, 2013
312 Pages

an albino student who hopes to get by this semester unnoticed. However, he does the opposite and falls for the most popular girl in school Vanessa Sheller, who happens to be the girlfriend of the most popular boy in school.

If anyone finds out that Vanessa and Tim have a thing going on it could mean social disaster. But that is not the only worry of Vanessa and Tim. They have to complete a senior paper called “The Tragedy Paper” given by the hardest English teacher in the school.

YAY For my second realistic fiction book of the year! I enjoyed this book very much. The author did an amazing job capturing me as I read. You are told the story through Tim however, Tim has graduated school and you are hearing through a CD  as a student named Duncan is hearing it.  Tim left his story, recorded on CDs, in his old room left for Duncan to hear. This set up was really cool because while Tim is sharing his story, Duncan has an on going story of his own.

As for the characters, I thought they were extremely developed. I was surprised by Tim because although he was conflicted on the inside you did not see it as he spoke with others. He was an extremely likable character; even Vanessa was a likable character. No one was over board with emotions or pity.

What I didn’t like was the lack of focus on the tragedy paper. Tim and Vanessa was not stressing this paper. It was there but it wasn’t the main focus. It was a focus for Duncan because Tim left his words to show Duncan tragedy. Tim and Vanessa did have school concerns but it was overruled by their feelings for each other.

Another concept about this book that I like and didn’t like was the tragedy. The author makes you assume and she even feeds that assumption  by bluntly saying everything that you’re thinking and when the climax hits you’re like that is not what expected. I love to be surprised in books but I go back and forth in this case because she made me feel as if I knew the ending. Good writing trick.

Overall, I loved this book. Perfect score: 5 Pickles