Review: Anatomy of a Boyfriend

Anatomy of a Boyfriend
Anatomy of a Boyfriend by Daria Snadowsky
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I hadn’t really heard much about this book before I read it, so I definitely didn’t have any preconceived notions about what it would be like. I didn’t even read the reviews by others on here to see how they felt about the book, so there was no bias. And, when I started the book, the first fifty or so pages seemed okay-ish. It was certainly better than two stars at page 50 than it was at the end.

For a work of realistic fiction, it was very unreal. The characters didn’t act or talk like teenagers. Even awkward teenagers don’t act like this. Some of the scenes almost came off as clinical and robotic in nature. Actually, a lot of them don’t seem like they would fit in any story for children, teens, or adults. They’re just very boring and weird.

For a romance, it had a lack of romance. Wes and Dom love each other, but there’s no rhyme or reason to why. I know that you could argue that that’s true for all romances and for love in general, but this book is especially bad at telling the story of why this guy is even her boyfriend or her first love.

It has a very sex-negative vibe. Amy is almost always degraded for being open to different types of sexual activities. The relationship between Dom and Wes portrays sex as being something that is always painful and awkward for girls, where guys will have orgasms and girls will always have to fake it. I know a lot of women do have that sort of experience, but we don’t really need to teach young women that it has to be like this. Sex is something where if you expect it to be painful and bloody and awkward, then you are more likely to have a painful experience. I’m not saying that the book needs to be smutty or anything like that, but give girls some hope that they aren’t going to be injured in sex acts. It’s also really disturbing that any time that Dom is looking forward to or thinking about sex that something bad happens to her or to Wes. That is another sex-negative vibe to have.

As for other things that really bugged me: Playing up the trope of a redheaded female character as sex-obsessed was really annoying. That may seem like a little thing, but since it’s an actual recognized trope for works of fiction (and, worse, a stereotype of redheads in the real world), it really isn’t all that little. There was also a bit of fat-shaming. You have a character (Dom) starting her first year of college, so there’s the mentioning of the freshman fifteen, which might be okay. What isn’t okay is that her mother starts telling her that she should order certain foods so that she can me more like her old self. When the character asks if it’s about her weight going up, she finds out that it is. When she turns to her father for support he says (and does) the following:

He emerges from behind his menu. “I agree with your mom. Guys can be a little overweight,” he says, pinching his gut with his hand, “but girls can’t.”

This is for her gaining enough weight so that her clothes just snug on her. In other words, she might have gone up one size and her parents are giving her a hard time. She’s also just been injured when she was exercising. When it continues and she goes to leave the table her father does the following:

“Dom, you’re blowing this way out of proportion,” Dad reprimands. “We’re staying put, and let’s have a nice dinner, for Christ’s sake.”

She’s basically been told that she isn’t allowed to be offended by their comments. That’s just wrong. If parents act like this, it is totally fine to get upset with them. This behavior is reprehensible. That she’s eventually treated like she overreacted after their comments have (naturally) hurt her feelings is so disgusting. And she ends up feeling both ashamed of her body and of her feelings being hurt. That’s not okay. And the way it is portrayed is not okay either.

And there’s the somewhat minor character Calvin. He might become a friend or a future boyfriend for her. Who knows? But the way that he acted when they first met was a little on the creepy side. This is another thing that probably would be best left out of books meant for the young adult age group. This might teach young people to allow this sort of behavior in their interpersonal relationships, which is a bit twisted and potentially dangerous.

It isn’t all bad, but the good parts of the book just aren’t enough to overcome the bad parts. The plot is really flat. The development of characters is flat. There are some insightful paragraphs, but they are truly few and far between. And there’s a quirkiness to certain parts that I enjoyed, but by the end of the book, they had disappeared. The humor, the fun, and everything good about the book was gone before the book ended. That’s not good, so this book is getting two stars because it was not executed very well.

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A Special Kind of Crazy

If you haven’t heard of the craziness that is Kathleen Hale, then prepare to be schooled. I need to rant about her exploits in craziness. There are some people who are just so messed up that it baffles me how they even function. Kathleen Hale is one of these people. Maybe her success in getting published or in staying out of prison is that people feel sorry for her. Maybe it’s because she doesn’t look like she could be all that threatening, but looks can be deceiving. After all, I bet that bunny didn’t think Glenn Close looked all that threatening.

Kathleen Hale is a writer.1 Her debut novel came out earlier this year. According to her, there were people who loved it and there were people who hated it. According to her own confession article, she seems to understand why people might be a little turned off by the book, at first. But then she fixates on one negative review in particular.2 Most people3 tell her not to engage with that reviewer, but she chooses not to pay attention to the warning. Instead, she does background checks, travels to the reviewer’s house (multiple times), harasses the reviewer on the phone (multiple times), checks out the reviewer’s personal social media accounts, and then writes a “pity me” story for The Guardian about how this reviewer wasn’t completely honest online. The story outs the reviewer and gives away some pretty personal information about the reviewer.

Most people aren’t completely forthright on the internet. At least, not in public spaces. There are little things that they might decide to fudge. If a person wants to review books under a pseudonym, let them. Chances are they do that because they feel safer doing things that way. Do you know what might make them feel less safe? An author coming to their house because they made a bad review. That’s sort of totally fucked up.

And it isn’t the first time that this particular author has done this sort of thing. In 2013, Hale wrote about a childhood acquaintance who made false accusations about Hale’s mother molesting her.4 Her solution, as an adolescent, to finding out that her mom had had charges filed against her was to throw peroxide on the accuser.5 She got arrested, but was released. After this, she monitored the girl’s AIM buddy list. When she finally saw the girl sign-on, she sent her multiple messages. Police showed up at her house and she was shocked. And she tried to grab the spotlight while explaining her harassment of the girl.6

She wanted the pity again, which is really all she deserves.

Well, that and jail-time.

Somehow, she has people supporting her in her bad decisions. There are people on Twitter who have called anyone who points out that she’s a stalker a psychopath or a sociopath. Except that they’re missing that those of us who point this out are empathizing with a person who’s been stalked, doxxed, and humiliated by a writer over a bad review. Yeah, that requires a real lack of compassion. I was unaware that feeling sorry for the victim of a crime was a socially unacceptable thing to do.

I hope that Hale gets the help that she obviously needs. If she doesn’t, then I hope she joins some Luddite organization that makes it harder to stalk people she doesn’t like. And I hope that people will seriously consider putting Hale on their personal author/book blacklists because having an opinion on her books could be risky.

For more on this whole situation, I’d recommend checking out the post about it on Dear Author.

  1. Considering how many blacklists she’s been placed on, maybe I should say that she was a writer. A successful career in fiction may be a pipe dream now. 

  2. She also harassed a person who wrote a 3-star review. 

  3. Her mom is not one of them. She actually encourages her to continue finding more out about this girl. 

  4. “Her” meaning the acquaintance, not the writer. 

  5. An action her mother thanked her for. 

  6. Her step-mom: You know that girl has bigger problems than you do.
    Police officer: You think after everything else the girl needs this?
    Hale: Those charges were dropped. We sued them back for defamation of character but we lost a lot of money and now there’s nothing we can do. Just because Lori is messed up doesn’t mean I’m not.
    Police officer: Aren’t you the one who attacked her with some kind of chemical? I wouldn’t go around pointing fingers if I were you — you’re the lucky one. 


Mortified Foot

I could easily forgive his pride, if he had not mortified mine.
Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

My right foot has been hurting for a while now. I didn’t want to get it checked because that might lead to having to stay off of it. And that could result in a choice to stop exercising in general. That would lead to worse health issues. And so on.

Yesterday, at Nana’s church, I began to notice that my foot wasn’t just hurting, it was also swollen. My left foot had no swelling, so I had a feeling this was related to the pain. When we got home, I noticed that the swelling was over the painful spots. I decided then that an almost 2 mile walk might do more harm than good.

Actually, the way I was increasing my distance123 may have caused this injury. I may have been doing too much too fast. I went from no walking a few weeks ago to almost two miles. That’s a lot of mileage in a little time period. So maybe I should slow my distance increases.

Anyway, I have an appointment for tomorrow morning to find out what is going on with my foot.

  1. plus the ill-fitting shoes 

  2. and my weight 

  3. and my Vitamin D deficiency 


Online Quiz Things (October 2014)

October 9, 2014: How did you die in your past life?

How Did You Die In Your Past Life?

OD’d in Woodstock: Your love for music, dancing and just having fun has a very long history. In your past life, you were a music fanatic who went to all the best concerts and clubs. You listened to some of the truly best artists in the history of music (LIVE!) and partied like a king/queen. Then came Woodstock: the nature, the music and the drugs. At least you know better this time around.

Aside from the drugs and the crowds, this totally sounds like me now.

October 10, 2014: What are you most inclined to be addicted to?

What are you most inclined to be addicted to?

Alcohol: The addiction you’re most inclined to have is alcohol!

Don’t Panic! You are an enjoyable person who knows how to have fun! Your friends would say that you’re the life of the party. But there’s a deep side to your personality. You’re empathetic, understanding, and a good listener. Not so bad, eh? The truth is that you’re actually a bit of an introvert that just needs a drink or two to loosen up and be social. But once you loosen up, you’re the best of the best.

Which totally makes sense for a non-drinking, non-partying person. Actually, I had a friend in high school that had this same sort of belief about me needing a drink or two. I’ve never had alcohol, so I wouldn’t know. Also, I think more than just a bit of an introvert. I’m a major introvert.

October 10, 2014: What is the first body part people notice about you?

What is the first body part people notice about you

Bust: Your best and most noticeable feature is your impressive bust! And we all know that it’s one of the most important parts of the body (evolutionary speaking of course). While you certainly have the goods, you manage to show off your body in a classy and sophisticated way.

But they’re not really noticeable. A B-cup on an obese person is not noticeable, except by people who are shocked that they aren’t bigger. Basically, the noticeable-ness of my boobs is that they noticeably lacking in size.

October 12, 2014: Which 90’s TV girl are you?

Which 90's TV girl are you?

Clarissa: Down to earth yet exceedingly nerdy. You are most like Nickelodeon’s Clarissa Darling of Clarissa Explains It All! Clarissa’s adventures began way back in 1991, where she taught the world that A.) Boys will totally watch a show about an awesome girl and B.) Girls can be computer nerds, too! Clarissa designed her own video games as a hobby, and would frequently stump dudes with her knowledge of tech and gaming. She also dealt with everyday problems with finesse and wisdom beyond her years – two qualities we’re willing to guess you possess as well. Wonder what she’d think of today’s video games!?

Sounds like me.

October 18, 2014: Which member of the 27 Club are you?

Which member of the 27 Club are you?

Jean-Michel Basquiat: Your thoughts are never too far away from your art. You are inspired by people on the street, a song on the radio, or a conversation with a friend. Life is complicated but you fall in love with it everyday. You are Jean-Michel Basquiat.

Another one that actually sounds like me.


Disney World Trip: June 16-19, 1990

This is a gallery1 of the pictures that my family took on a vacation to Disney World and Sea World in 1990, when I was six years old. Pictures will be added as I get around to scanning them.2

Continue reading

  1. This means there are a lot of pictures. 

  2. This means that I always procrastinate, so you shouldn’t expect for it to be any different with this. 


Have You Heard The Good News?

Pap smears don’t have to hurt.

Oh my goodness. I didn’t believe my friends when they would say that their Pap smears didn’t hurt. I thought they were lying.1 I honestly thought they were lying or trying to put on a brave face, but, no, it’s possible to have a pain free Pap.

The doctor was really good about the whole thing. He told me before the speculum went in. He and his attending2 also told me before they started on the feeling up3 of the pelvic and boob areas. I think that had more to do with the disclosure of the childhood experiences.

He said my nausea and other monthly issues were due to the PCOS being untreated for so long. So it’s not going untreated. It is being treated with the great and wonderful Depo Provera shot, which having it was the most painful part of today’s visit. My mom has been a bit grumpy that I went on Depo because of the blood clot scare of whenever it was.4 She actually said, “Well, hopefully, it won’t kill you.” She’s such a positive, life-affirming person.

Anyway, I guess that’s all.

  1. Kind of like how I thought people lied when they told me that I was pretty. 

  2. nearly wrote his Autoblow II–thanks, Seth Meyers 

  3. not literally 

  4. 2008, I think? 

Random blog posts since 2001. Other randomness since 1984.