105 Ways to Give a Book

The Bermudez Triangle

The Bermudez TriangleBack to The Bermudez Triangle, one of my first books read in this nutty bout of reading. I’ve been intrigued by Maureen Johnson since hearing about her books from other bloggers, but to be honest her connection with John Green brought her to the front of my mind. My thinking being pretty close to the original idea of Friendster. If I like John Green’s books — which I do — and he’s friends with Maureen Johnson — which he is — than I will like her books. Which as it turns out, I do. At least this one, so far. But I’m moving her others to top of my lists.

I wanted to read The Bermudez Triangle after the whole book-banning issue. I didn’t feel like it was something I could weigh in on without having read the book. Because, in a way, isn’t that what the objection was about it the first place? The book was removed based on one parent’s opinion, but without a thorough reading. So now I’ve read it, and I can see how some parents would have issues with the book, because it’s not about one kiss but the development of a lesbian relationship.

Understand, that I think the book addresses the topic in a mild, pretty unobjectionable way. It’s a very realistic story of how a blooming relationship between two members of a trio of girlfriends can shake everything to the core. The parallel story of the left-out friend and her long-distance boyfriend is also interesting, especially as it echoes that relationships — all relationships — are difficult, messy, emotional things.

Along with being a accurate picture of sexual identity crises and personal connection conflicts, The Bermudez Triangle is well-written and very funny. If I’d been on my game, I’d have been marking passages left and right while I read. Very witty lines, especially from the character Parker, who makes friends with Nina and has/had a crush on Mel. In fact, I reserve the right to come back later and just list funny bits from the book.

What I would say about the Bartlesville book removal is that I don’t condone it. I think books that talk about things teenagers may be experiencing are important for teenagers to be able to read. That said, at least I know that the issue in question isn’t a single instance of a gay character, but is the theme of the book. Today, I guess, no matter how innocent the description, a book about coming to terms with one’s sexual identity is going to draw fire.

I’m very glad I read the book. I liked it very much. And I can’t wait to read more by Maureen Johnson, uncaped crusader for truth, justice, and witty banter.


Little Willow said...

Hurrah for TBT, MR, Parker, and the 48HBC.

Anonymous said...

I just bought this one -- but I adored 13 Little Blue Envelopes.

The Library Lady said...

"13" IS great. And "Devilish" is even better!

Anonymous said...

Ooh, I liked Devilish, but that's all the Maureen Johnson I've read so far. Guess I'll put this one on the list too!

ElsKushner said...

I liked this one better than 13 Little Blue Envelopes--it seemed more cohesive.

I didn't think it was primarily about the development of a lesbian relationship; though that was certainly one of the primary plot threads, the real heart of the story is the friendship of the three main characters and how they're able to maintain it through changes in their lives. The book reminded me more of "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" than of, say, "Empress of the Universe" or "Annie on my Mind" or other teen coming-out stories.

Anonymous said...

=) Nice review. I love this book..ALL MJ books, really. I hope you enjoy reading the rest of them!