Harriet explains her love of Louise Rennison’s Confessions of Georgia Nicolson series in today’s Recommended Reading.
After a long childhood love affair with Jacqueline Wilson’s stories I fell into the awkward early-teenage years with nothing to grasp my new-found moody and confused way of thinking. Tracy Beaker, Double Act and other Jacqueline Wilson novels no longer entertained me; I found them too immature for the sophisticated adult woman I had decided I was at thirteen.
Sadly, the chic redefinition I had given myself was far from the truth.
The liminal state between child and adult was an incredibly uncomfortable one as it is for many. I was deep in the pit of ‘NOBODY understands me!’ teenage angst, and also too embarrassed to tell my mother I wanted to wear makeup. Jacqueline Wilson taught me about foster care, having a twin and what it’s like to live in a bed and breakfast, but she most certainly failed to prepare me for the mortifying situation of asking for a bra!
I had always liked reading, so armed with a Christmas giftcard I went to Waterstone’s on a mission to find a new series to enjoy. I had never heard of Louise Rennison before but the book covers of The Confessions of Georgia Nicolson were shiny and mentioned thongs and boys. As a thirteen-year-old girl, the possibility of unlocking the mystical secrets of uncomfortable underwear and the opposite sex was a magical opportunity and so I purchased the first two novels of the series. I remember reading as soon as I got in the car on the ride home and crying with laughter whilst my younger cousin watched me bemused.
The series follows Georgia, a normal teenage girl, who has no idea what she’s doing. She acts as if she’s a wise woman of the world but in reality is naïve and blindly feeling her way around growing-up like the rest of us. I had never read a book where I felt the author was completely on my wavelength before and it was like having a friend. The hilarious situations Georgia and her friends manage to get themselves in taught me to laugh at my own embarrassing situations, and that I was not alone in overthinking everything. The novels are light-hearted, and easy to read. I am much of the opinion that books should be enjoyable, not difficult to wade through.
Georgia is funny, self-absorbed and rude to her friends occasionally, but overall is kind and compassionate, making her thoughts and ramblings incredibly endearing. The books were my companion throughout my early teens and I’d recommend them to any young reader for a good giggle. Not only this, but that everyone has the same weird thoughts you do!