18 November 2012

Review: Various Positions

Various Positions
Various Positions by Martha Schabas

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Every so often you pick up a book because of a random recommendation you read somewhere. You read the book, tear through it, even as you're making faces about how weird and dark and kind of bad it is, and yet you read on, not so much because it's a trainwreck (even though it is) but more because you end up kind of puzzled about how this came to be to begin with.

Thus is Various Positions, which is truly a cross between the show Bunheads and the movie Black Swan, with some truly destructive stuff going on throughout. We follow Georgia into ballet academy - only a freshman, she's pretty naive about the world around her, and her peers don't exactly help the situation. As she experiences a sexual awakening of sorts, and not a good kind (but not really a bad kind, either, to be truthful), her whole world as she knows it comes down around her.

I don't want to say this book was inappropriate, because that's the wrong word. A lot of inappropriate stuff happens in this book, and it's sad as opposed to played for anything else. What's worse is that it's the worst kind of inappropriate - the kind where bad things happen to people, and the only ones who face any real, clear, lasting consequences for their actions are the people not doing the bad deeds, but the victims of them. Worse, the key plot point is telegraphed very early on, and yet takes a turn to the bad in a way that...I don't know. It's not good.

I don't know. Avoid this one if you can, it's probably not what you think and almost certainly not what you want it to be. Chalk this one up as one I read so you wouldn't have to.

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