I've had this book defined from everything in-between brilliant and a train-wreck. For whatever reason, even readers not compelled to write reviews online feel strongly enough to send me emails after they are done reading. I stare at them and shake my head and ask my husband to explain. He say he can't. He hasn't read the book. I find reader reaction a baffling thing:
"Don't call your book Romance. You've bastardized the work. It is a brilliant, dark and twisted contemporary female coming of age novel, like a Catcher in the Rye."...Sweetie, I don't think so.
"Unusually introspective romance between two damaged souls."
"good literature doesn't pull punches. It reaches into our very souls and the very heart of who we are. THE GIRL ON THE HALF SHELL did exactly that for me. It's a beautiful psychological look at the complexity of human psychology."
"I couldn't stop turning the page. It felt like I was reading a train wreck. This isn't romance. This is unhappy!"
"This author has a gift of taking the reader on a beautifully balanced journey of exploring dark and twisted souls, followed by sweet and tender moments between the characters."
"Wow, that was the most intense and emotional thing I've ever read."
The only review I expect to understand is my mother's. I think it will go something like this, unless my brother doesn't show her how to post a review on Amazon: Filth, filth, and more filth. In mom's world I'm still not allowed to know about sex even though I have a house full of children!