Author: Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
Publisher: Antheneum Books for Young Readers
Published: October 2010
The ups and downs of high school life continue in the second and third bind-ups in the Alice series. In It's Not Like I Planned It This Way, Alice's sophomore year is chock full of change, from a new living arrangement, to a possible new relationship, to the new found freedom that comes with driving. And in Please Don't Be True, the adventure of growing up continues in Alice's Junior year, when she and her friends deal with issue like pregnancy scare and heartbreaking good-bye. But no matter what changes, Alice is as relatable as ever.
It's Not Like I Planned It This Way, I found was a lot better than the first Alice bind-up. Although Alice is still in the beginning stages of high school, and has a couple more years to go, she seems to be in a bit of a better understanding of others, and that it's not always about herself in certain situations.
I really liked the fact that there was a lot more diversity mentioned in the book. If you think about the year that it was published before the bind up (which was in 2004-2006) you would say that the diversity talk would be at somewhat of a young or early time as opposed to our world now. I really liked that even though almost every character didn't mind that Alice was friends with girls that were lesbians or being friends with a girl of another race, there were obviously some parent characters that weren't all that pleased, but in true fashion, that was put to a stop almost immediately...Go Alice and friends!
Alice still starts out sort of naive, especially when it comes to romance, or intimate things, like when Sylvia talks about Valentines day and lingerie and romantic nights with her dad...but really? I don't think any kid wants to really hear about plans that will happen in the bedroom... ugh!
I also found that when it came to the story line, the book is repetitive when it comes to information of family, friends, or the past-even though it was already mentioned in the previous book. Also that some aspects of Alice's life are jumped and a little rushed. Like when Alice is on a trip with friends and sneaks out to do "things" with the guys, and then goes straight into a relationship with a guy in the next chapter. I feel like Alice sometimes goes from acting like an adult (and sometimes a reckless one) to a child frequently.
I think Alice still has some growing up to do. She still over analyzes things based on rumors or what gets around school. I understand that since Alice is still in school, and a teenager, she tends to make a lot of mistakes-Which is totally relatable!- but I sometimes wonder, if she thinks about some of the things she does at all? She still needs to grow up, and I'm sure that will happen-hopefully-when she reaches her senior year.
Overall, I found there to be more drama than the first, and more reckless actions not only by Alice, but also Pam and Liz. It kept the book entertaining, but, I think that there could have been more to the story.
Can't wait for her senior year to come..Only junior left for Alice McKinley!
So until then, Keep Reading!
Your Graduated Bookworm :)