Date: Mon, 22 May 16:05
Oh my God, this feels really weird, writing you an email as if I know you or something! But the thing is, I really feel as if I do know you. And – here goes – I love you. I know we haven’t met or anything, but sometimes when I watch you in Jessop Close I feel as if you’re talking just to me.”
Georgie’s first major crush is Dylan Curtland, except she can’t exactly flirt and bat her eyelashes at him like her friend Jessica does to Jamie, the boy she fancies. That’s because Dylan isn’t a boy from school, he’s an actor on Georgie’s favourite soap, so she decides to send him an email. She’s never expecting a reply but one comes anyway and even though its not what she was hoping for she carries on emailing him, because its good to have someone to talk to when you’re whole life is upside down. Georgie confides in Dylan, however not all is what it seems and the friendship with her emate is something different entirely to what she expected.
I was expecting a quick throw away read from this book and it turned out that, whilst quick, it definitely wasn’t one to just completely forget about once it’s finished. The emotion and the issues raised in Dear Dylan made for an incredible book about a girl with many problems and not a clue how to solve them. I loved every minute of it, even staying up into the night to finish it because I needed to know what would happen at the end!
The story is told through a series of emails between Georgie and ‘Dylan.’ What actually happens is Georgie emails her crush and idol and receives two or three replies which are very generic, but is still so excited she carries on emailing him. From that point on ‘Dylan’ comes clean and it turns out that it’s Nan who has been reply, Dylans mother. This happens early on it the book so it’s not really a spoiler as such. The relationship between the two blossoms and they become very good emates, once Georgie’s calmed down. Georgie is going through a rough patch because she’s 14, which is a tough age, and her stepdads a loser and she’s been banned from going to the drama workshop she wants to go to because she has to look after her four year old sister, Michaela. Nan is also going through a rough patch trying to deal with the recent lose of her husband and her son moving to America, both feel very lonely, which is why they become such good friends. The themes and issues raised within Dear Dylan are so powerful and I loved the way they were dealt with so I really think its worth a read for many teenage girls.
The characters were interesting. I had a varied mix of opinions on them ranging from loving – Jamie – to actual loathing – Tone-Deaf (Georgie’s stepdad). in between you get all sorts and I loved both Georgie and Nan. They both needed each other so that they could grow and you really saw Georgie grow and become her own person in this book. Jessica, Georgie’s best friend was such a self-absorbed prick that I couldn’t stand her and I was willing Georgie to dump her ass as soon as possible! Angelica, Georgie’s mum, was lovely but I felt so sorry for her, there were times when I wanted to scream and hsout at her but I could also see the reason she acted the way she did and I really loved the way things worked out for her. Michaela was adorable and I never wanted her to leave the pages, she was such a sweet little thing and theres one scene where I really just wanted to scoop her up in my arms and run away with her!
The email format of the book made it interesting to read and you really have to take note of dates, times and who sent what because its not just a simple back and forth between to the two characters which mixed things up a bit, in a good way! The only concern I’d have with the book is that Nan and Georgie chat on the phone and met up and no-one knows where Georgie is at that point… now I know Georgie is 14 but she’s still only a child and I don’t think that meeting up with strangers is technically something that should be done at that age… I have read books which have features those types of things before and they’ve almost always had warnings in them about the dangers of talking to people online but this one didn’t and it does worry me… I don’t think I’d be as bothered if people knew where Georgie was but literally not a single person could have said where she was at that point, other than Nan! But that’s just me thinking from a parent point of view… not a teenager!
All in all Dear dylan was a great read that really gave me more than I expected! I loved both the characters and the way the story ended and how it got the that ending. I will definitely be on the look out for more from this author!
Dear Dylan was published by Electric Monkey on April 2nd 2012. My copy was received as a gift from the lovely SJ from A Dream of Books.