July 6, 2012

The List by Siobhan Vivian

The List

An intense look at the rules of high school attraction -- and the price that's paid for them.

It happens every year. A list is posted, and one girl from each grade is chosen as the prettiest, and another is chosen as the ugliest. Nobody knows who makes the list. It almost doesn't matter. The damage is done the minute it goes up.

This is the story of eight girls, freshman to senior, "pretty" and "ugly." And it's also the story of how we see ourselves, and how other people see us, and the tangled connection of the two.

My Thoughts/Review:

I liked this book, but I had a few issues with it. Being the complete and total weirdo that I am, I liked all the 'ugliest' girls best. It really seemed like they had more development, and that they would last longer in a dog-eat-dog world. The prettiest kind of blend together, because their situation wasn't particularly unique, or anything like that.

I mean, I thought that Lauren and Margo were good characters, but I can't even really remember the other prettiest characters at all. The 'ugliest' girls, Danielle and Sarah, (and the others that I either didn't like, or can't remember their names) had it rough. Although, someone once told me that no one can make you feel ugly, or worthless, without your consent.

I thought that Sarah was probably the hands-down best character, but out of forty-six chapters, I only read five or six in her point of view. I would have loved to have read more, because I think that her story had a ton of potential, and I would have loved to have seen all the little things in her life, and to have read more about Milo.

Danielle was my second favorite, because she had the strength to be who se really was, in the end. I thought that the list was just created by a guy, but it turns out that I was wrong. (I apologize for having been sexist. It was my first instinct.)

I agree with the principal's thoughts about the list: That all the girls have been objectified. It's an insult to be on the list at all. To be prettiest, or ugliest, but only to the person making the list. The rest of the people are just following the writer. They don't have actual opinions that the list 'matters'. They think that it's a harmless tradition, that's been passed on for years.

But it's not. Everyone on that list has been put down. Been told that all they are is pretty, or ugly. They are just objects to be labeled. There is no bigger insult than that right there.

All in all, the story progressed pretty quickly, and I liked most of the characters. They were well-developed, and they all had different problems that they were getting over. I liked it a lot.



  1. I've been eyeing this book for awhile now. The overview is definitely tempting, too! I totally agree with the principal's thoughts of the book as well. I think I'm going to give this book a try. Thanks for the review!

    Demitra @ http://characterized.blogspot.com

    1. I really liked it, but when you have eight main characters, your not going to love all of them. For having eight characters though, there was never any time where I was confused inbetween chapters so, that was awesome. I think all books deserve a chance. :)
      Your welcome!

  2. I really want to read this book, it sounds like it's dealing with interesting issues. I agree - the List does seem like a bad thing, objectifying girls and hurting them and stuff, but it'll be interesting to see what the author does with this and if she manages to get a good moral lesson across.

    Catherine x
    The Book Parade