Sunday, January 13, 2013

Review: The Tragedy Paper

About the Book:
Tim Macbeth is a 17-year-old albino and a recent transfer to the prestigious Irving School, where the motto is, “Enter here to be and find a friend.” Tim does not expect to find a friend; all he really wants to do is escape his senior year unnoticed. Despite his efforts to blend into the background, he finds himself falling for the quintessential “it” girl, Vanessa Sheller, girlfriend of Irving’s most popular boy. To Tim’s surprise, Vanessa is into him, too, and she can kiss her social status goodbye if anyone finds out. Tim and Vanessa enter into a clandestine relationship, but looming over them is the Tragedy Paper, Irving’s version of a senior year thesis, assigned by the school’s least forgiving teacher.

The story unfolds from two alternating viewpoints: Tim, the tragic, love-struck figure, and Duncan, a current senior, who uncovers the truth behind Tim and Vanessa’s story and will consequently produce the greatest Tragedy Paper in Irving’s history.


The Tragedy Paper by Elizabeth LaBan

Source: ARC from Engelman and Co

Rating: 5 of 5 Stars

The Tragedy Paper is the first book I have finished in 2013 and it's so unbelievably good. When I first heard about it I thought it would be a good read, but I had serious problems putting it down. There were a few work nights where I stayed up until the early hours in the morning because I kept telling myself ten more pages. Tragedy Paper is told from two points of views, Tim and Duncan's.

Tim doesn't have friends in his current school and he's counting the days until he leaves, when his mom's boyfriend offers him an opportunity to go to a private school he went to. He tells Tim that living at Irving was the best experience of his life and it could be for Tim as well. Being albino has made Tim an expert at not noticing people and ignoring anyone who stares at him. Tim's trip to Irving is completely chaotic, starting when Vanessa, a girl at the airport spills a drink on him right before his flight. As if that wasn't enough his flight is cancelled. Vanessa, making small talk, finds out Tim managed to get the last room available at the airport hotel and she decides rather than spend the night at the gate she's going to share his room with him. The two get to know each other and spending a day snowed in at the airport turns out to be a great thing. Tim finds out that Vanessa is also on her way to Irving, but doesn't tell her he's going to Irving as well because he's afraid of how she would react. It's one thing to be friends with him when no one knows, but he can't deal with her rejection at school, if she shuns him for being albino. The story from Tim's point of view is perfection. He's sweet, love struck and completely fearful of what could be.

Duncan is returning to Irving as a senior. Irving has a number of traditions, the first is that each student must write a Tragedy Paper and the students work on it all year. The second is that the graduating seniors leave a gift for the new students living in their old room. Duncan gets the room nobody wants, it's where Tim lived. Tim leaves him cds telling him all about his senior year. He promises to be completely honest with Duncan and that it could be the topic for his Tragedy Paper. Duncan starts to listen, but at the same time he is afraid to relive the horrible accident that happened last year.

The Tragedy Paper is Elizabeth LaBan's debut novel and I can't tell you how much I loved it. You won't believe how wonderful it really is until you read it for yourself. Elizabeth LaBan is going on my buy anything she writes list! If you need more convincing Sarah Dessen, Jennifer Weiner, and Sarah Pekkanen all are talking about it!

To learn more about Elizabeth Laban visit: http://elizabethlaban.com

15 comments:

  1. I want this book so much. It will be mine on payday. Oh yes, it will be mine. :-)

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  2. This sounds like such a great read! Thanks for the review!

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    1. Thanks for visiting Melissa! let me know if you read it.

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  3. So glad you liked it. :) I can't decide on this one.

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    1. Juju It's such a good mystery and its available on audio. You know we love audio books!

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  4. I hadn't heard anything about this novel until this week, but it's suddenly popping up everywhere! Seriously considering picking up the audio of this one now.

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  5. Am in the middle of a book that isn't quite doing it for me -- might have to ditch and skip ahead to this one. Boy this sounds so original, I'm excited. Thanks for the recommendation.

    xo,
    Chris

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    1. Chris: It's very interesting. I think you would enjoy it.

      Thanks for stopping by
      M.

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  6. Unputdownable books are the BEST! :) I need to look more into this one, for sure!

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    1. If you pick it up let me know what you think about it!

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  7. I have this on my Debut Author Challenge list, so I'm glad to hear that it's a great read! Can't wait to read it.

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    1. I love finding new debut authors! I hope you pick this one up.

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  8. I've not heard of this book before, but the premise sounds fantastic. Plus, I really like books told from different viewpoints. Needless to say I loved your review, and since I'm definitely going to read this, thank you for avoiding spoilers!

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  9. I have been wondering about this book. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

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