For all my mopes there was a decent-sized review of EB in the Age today. Here is my favourite bit:
"Anyone wanting to have a go at Howell for writing dirty subversive teenage literature had better read the book to the very end ..."
Dang! I'm trying to write dirty subversive teenage literature!!
and this was nice:
"Everything Beautiful is bound to appeal to all the young girls who drink, sleep around, do drugs, and read.
(What is she trying to say? That they don't read? Or so few do that it's worth noting?)
It's funny, too because it's all about the content and nothing about style (or maybe the style - there is some, honest - gets swamped by the content. Or maybe that's just a YA problem - as in a problem of older people, possibly parents of wilful teenagers reviewing and not the target audience. (Though having said that, a young girl from Minnesota said EB was "boring and lacking in action for most of it" so maybe I'm better off if people get the shudders at mentions of pole-dancers and Jagermeister.)
Ack. It's all so subjective.