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, I realised as a young adult, was not a ‘try-hard’ book about identity and belonging.
There are no wailing victims of patriarchy, no big familial feasts featuring big bowls of pasta.
No charges of chauvinism or cringing self-indulgent woe-is-me stories of being teased for school lunchbox pastrami sandwiches.
She told Zia Patrizia's next-door neighbor and it got back to Nona" Telecom would go broke if it weren't for the Italians (Marchetta p11).
When she goes out with Jacob Coote she knows that her grandmother will not approve because he is not an Italian boy.
It was the first Australian book I discovered that did not ‘try hard’ to depict youth, class or ethnicity.
When you are a young adult, you innately have what Hemingway considers crucial for every serious writer: a built-in bovine-excrement detector, to put it euphemistically.These characters are Josephine Alibrandi, Nonna Katia and John Barton. She feels that she is out of place at school – a 'wog girl' at an exclusive eastern suburbs school full of 'blond yuppies or European trendies'. Girls like Carly Bishop bully her – in a low-key way - but she refuses to be put down by them.She challenges their superior views and ends up breaking Carlys nose by hitting Carly with a science book.Her grandmother is always on her back about where Josie is and whom she is seeing.Josie feels like there's a spy network watching over her every move "Signora Formosa saw you, she said you and your friends almost ran her over.Additionally, encountering the more confident and refined adult voices of Wharton, Austen, Fitzgerald and Dickens made me realise that writing was hard work, that it wasn’t about putting to paper.This is the blessing and curse of reading really good writing: we think that our own voices are inchoate.This sort of thinking was not uncommon because many young adult books of the time dealing with ‘our lives’ never quite got the voice right.They sounded like adults ‘trying hard’ to focus on ‘teenage themes.’ But in , we found a heroine who lived in the suburbs with her single mother and her meddling grandmother, who went to school, obsessed about boys and worked at Mc Donalds.The two most influential women in my life, whose relati ..., I was around the same age as Josephine Alibrandi.