Welcome back to the Georgia Nicolson Readalong!
Quick refresher: in honour of our dearly departed Teen Queen Louise Rennison, I started a readalong so that we could read (or re-read) her classic Georgia Nicolson series. Every three weeks we’ll post about the next book in the series. You’re invited to join in at any time!
You can catch up with posts on Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging, On the Bright Side, I’m Now the Girlfriend of a Sex God and Knocked Out By My Nunga-Nungas.
Please note that if you haven’t read this book yet and intend to, there are spoilers!
The first three books in the series strongly enforced the theme of what it’s like to be a girl who is starting to go through puberty, getting attention from guys and fighting with friends. It solidly did the job over three books, but it needed to pick up the pace a bit. Dancing in My Nuddy-Pants doesn’t quite highlight that much about the aforementioned besides mentions here and there about buying bras and boys leering at them in the streets. It doesn’t quite highlight anything. Not much happens, and it feels like an in-between. I feel like if this series was to be published in current day, the requirements for plot would be a bit different. I’m not sure what it was like a decade ago, but it’s interesting to think about. I know it’s more realistic that big drama doesn’t happen all the time, but for these kinds of things, reality has to be bent a bit. But by the fourth book, a series has attracted an audience who will gobble anything up.
The one thing I really liked about this book was that there were more funny scenes with Georgia’s family. They may not be funny to her, but they sure are to everyone else. In one scene, Georgia’s dad was trying to prove he was manly around her mum by saying he was going to do sit-ups:
When I went back into the front room, Dad was back lying on the sofa watching TV. I asked him, “How many sit-ups did you do?”
“Well, I think it’s a mistake to rush into things.”
“Just the one, then?”
He pretended to be interested in some gardening program.
Here’s another with her mum and little sister Libby:
Libby was still up when I got in. She had her pajama top on but her bottom was flowing free and wild. She is not what you would call inhibited, which is a pity. She was giving Teddy a late-night haircut. Mum said when I came in, “Come on, Libbs, it’s very late and your big sister is home now. Time for bed.”
Libby didn’t even look up, she just said, in an alarmingly grown-up voice, “Not now, dear, I’m busy.”
I’ve also always fondly remembered Sven, Georgia’s friend Rosie’s Swedish boyfriend. I remembered that there was a scene that made me laugh for a million years when I first read it as a teen. It was this:
Met the gang at the usual place to go to the gig. Sven had his special flares on. They have a battery in them and little lightbulbs all the way down the seams. When he presses the battery his trousers light up. He really is bonkers. And huge.
When we got to the door of the Buddha Lounge he said to the door guy, “Got evening, I am Sven and these are my chicks. Let us in, my trousers want to boogie.” And Rosie isn’t a bit embarrassed.
I still think it’s great!
The more and more Georgia teases her best friend Jas for being moral and boring, the more I like Jas, to be honest. So I was satisfied when Jas finally bit back a bit when Georgia’s apologizing for hitting her knee in field hockey by offering to carry Jas home. “All right, don’t drop me, though.” She then made Georgia polish a badge and feed her a snack. Get it, girl.
Through the book, Georgia moons over how Robbie’s band The Stiff Dylans are going to America (“Hamburger-a-go-go-land”) and she daydreams about going with him. But she must be thinking in the back of her mind that that’s not going to happen for her, though he may leave eventually (she doesn’t quite address it in her diary, but come on!). So when we get to the end and Robbie breaks it to her he’s leaving – though to go work on an ecological farm in New Zealand instead – she’s upset but confusingly relieved. And since Dave the Laugh dumped her friend Ellen, that’s where her mind is going to go, because she’s still quite attracted to him and realizes she can be more herself around him than she could with Robbie. I don’t remember what happens next, but I’m predicting Georgia + Dave will be the force of the next book, Away Laughing on a Fast Camel (one of Dave’s sayings).
Overall, I read this book in about an hour, so it wasn’t a horrible thing that I was bored by it, really. One hour of my life. I still got some giggles, so that’s fine by me.
What did you guys think of the book? We will reconvene for Away Laughing on a Fast Camel on June 14.