“<b>True Confessions Of A Heartless Girl</b>” ends tenderly but coming of age stories aren't my bag. I follow <b>Martha Brooks</b> as a fellow-Manitoban and the first authoress who encouraged my writing. One memorable tip was “Show a story”. How incongruous to subtle novels, that one about a girl getting things wrong was laid on thickly. Giving a dog a bone was feasible and also peeling wallpaper that yields rotten walls. Her other two foibles defied believable behaviour and cliché #1.... our troubled protagonist was pregnant.
We sympathize with Noreen, at the beginning, because we're apprised of a bad stepfather. We understand clinging to a good boyfriend. Stories need a hurdle but I couldn't buy half of them. Fleeing the first time Wesley is critical? At Pembina Lake, two ladies help her out. A middle-aged farmer offers an unused cottage. But can you think of anyone not giving a “do's & don'ts” tour about fireplace safety? Would you not open a flue for a city child? Even if that were believable, did the guy need to lose valued photo albums? One lady lost an adult daughter, two others are too timid to admit being in love. A thirty-seven year-old is written like she is fifty. The array of “life's disappointments” felt made-up for tear-jerkers.
A personal deal-breaker: I loathe any hint of animal disposability. This novel's saint remarks of his cat's family: “I didn't have the heart to get rid of these ones”! Should anyone applaud not murdering kittens? Outrageously, he lives near a veterinarian. Spay your cat! I like that this isn't about a tough chick, as the title suggested and that the outcome of the story it does entail is unexpected. I admire that adults grow-up in concert with Noreen and how gracefully <b>Martha</b> describes Manitoba; never writing superfluously.
Noreen is 17, pregnant, and scared. Stealing her boyfriend''s money and truck seemed like a good idea at the time. But now that she''s reached the sleepy town of Pembina Lake, Manitoba, reality comes crashing down.
Everyone in this town has a secret, so it should be the perfect place to hide. But Noreen brings chaos wherever she goes, and soon, the town is turned inside out.
But can Noreen face her past and her feelings? Or will she, too, try to disappear in Pembina Lake?
If you are looking for a book about being a pregnant teenager, this is a pretty good choice. If you're looking for a fascinating read, I'd pass.
Brooks does a great job of portraying the emotion and angst that go along with teen pregnancy, but eventually, Noreen's refusal to accept help becomes grating. The pacing is a little slow for my taste, as well.
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She turned onto the main street -- the sound of the lake a whisper behind her, the leaves of the tall trees now talking overhead -- she saw his truck parked in front of the café and Wesley sitting inside it.... He didn't seem to notice as she got closer, his eyes closed as if he was concentrating on something. With her hand on her stomach, she steadied herself. The window on the passenger's side was open and she could see the distinct curve of his dark lashes as they rested against his cheek. "Wesley," she said quietly.... She felt a hot sting of shame. She wanted to hide. But in Pembina Lake, beside a truck, in front of a café, wheat fields and sky flaming pink and orange and gold all around, there was absolutely nowhere to go.
In the midst of a heaven-rattling summer storm a young stranger blows into a small prairie town. On the run after taking her latest boyfriend's truck, with a pocketful of stolen money and a heart full of pain, seventeen-year-old Noreen Stall seems to invite trouble.
And trouble comes soon enough, as Noreen's new mistakes trigger calamities that shake the lives of the residents of Pembina Lake.
Seventeen-year-old Noreen Stall is pregnant and frightened and not knowing what to do, steals her boyfriend's money, truck, and begins driving until she reaches the sleepy-eyed town of Pembina Lake. She soon discovers that everyone in this crazy town has a secret, for her, it's the perfect place to hide! But Noreen has a knack for stirring up trouble and it follows her wherever she goes drawing unwanted attention to herself.
This wasn't a novel that rated high on my reading list, cute enough, but not anything even close to serious literature and fiction. Unfortunately, this not the type of book that I would recommend to anyone.