Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Inside The Mind of Gideon Rayburn
A Novel by Sarah Miller

rating: 2 out of 10 "books"

When this book first came in for me at my local library, I was a little embarassed to be seen carrying it around to be honest. I have no idea why the publishers would choose to make the cover a close up shot of a girl's chest regardless of the fact that the book basically details the life of a horny teenage boy. There could have been other ways to achieve this effect, especially since the target audience for this story is probably teenage girls (afterall, what teenage girl wouldn't want to know what their male classmate/whatever, is actually thinking?). The only reason I could see this being done is to draw in a more male audience.

With that opening rant, I have to say, Inside The Mind of Gideon Rayburn does not get much better. The premise is interesting: girl mysteriously ends up in boy's mind and uses this advantage to secretly win him over without his even knowing, because she knows what he wants and how he wants it. The narrator states at the very beginning of the story that, "My feelings, though perhaps passionate for someone my age and experience, are pretty normal. But my situation -- that is unique, and that's what puts me in a position to tell you everything. I mean it. Everything you've ever wondered about what guys think (and feared about what they want), I'm going to tell you. You are going to learn what boys say when girls are not in the room and how they feel when they're on top of one. I will, for now, leave out one very crucial thing: who I am. I'm in this story too, and not just inside Gid's head. But there are a lot of girls -- and women -- in this story. Which one am I?" Sounds interesting enough, but the majority of the story is about an oversexed boy trying to get a girl he doesn't even know, to sleep with him in order to win a bet his egotistical, misogynistic roommates set so he can prove himself to them. The romantic part, if you can call it that, is that in the end he happens to have feelings for his "lay."

I hated this story. The happy ending could not make up for the trashiness and sour taste left after reading the beginning to middle of the story. This is not a story for teenagers, at least not high school aged. The kids in the story are supposed to be High School Prep kids, but the story reads more like a dumb Van Wilder or American Pie movie, minus the funny. There's tons of bad language and sex talk, which although I can understand for a book that's supposed to be about what guys think and talk about, I guess I just wasn't expecting as much. If anything, the book is at least honest in that regard. Still, this is not a book you would want to add to your classroom collection or school library. For as much as I didn't enjoy the book Youth In Revolt, at least that one was bizzare and entertaining. You know the phrase, "Don't judge a book by it's cover?" With Inside The Mind of Gideon Rayburn, you should and it will save you a lot of time. I gave this book a rating of 2 out of 10 "books" which I consider generous and only did because while the entire story was lacking, at least the concept was somewhat original.

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