I’ve been forgetting to use my bookmarks lately but if I had been using one last night I would have had a doozy of a quote to jot down. In fact, I’ll probably still do it because nothing is stopping me and this quote will take up most of the bookmark anyway. Who cares about what happened in the rest of the book? Honestly, not me really.
Background: I’ve been reading this series by Australian author John Marsden called The Tomorrow Series. They’re about a group of teenagers who are camping in the bush and come home to their small town to discover their country has been invaded and all their family and neighbors are being held captive. They start a guerrilla movement and eventually hook up with New Zealand military and some kids even younger than them. So yes, basically, Red Dawn, Oz style. It’s YA but very serious, violent, soul-sucking YA with a lot of PTSD, even more really stupid love triangle internal monologing, and a lot of death. And some religion. There were 7 books. Some were amazing, some were only okay. Then after they finished and ended…sort of happily, he decided to write a second series titled The Ellie Chronicles which further follows the main protagonist. In order to really capture the terror and vengeance of the first series, some terrible shit goes down in the first book. Ellie’s parents, who she’s finally reunited with after seven books, get gunned down on their own property by opposing rebels. This is upsetting to say the least but then most of the rest of the book is about an evil lawyer who’s trying to sell her family farm to a hotel developer. YEAH. But in the midst of that there’s some historical espionage learning, a couple missions, a rape, buying a bunch of cows, AND this incredibly inappropriate quote.
Ellie is having a little mental breakdown (as she often does) and thinking about her mom and dad:
“…her big brown nipples that she didn’t like but I loved, his long, soft penis and its curious head, her pubic hair so dark and mysterious, his pubic hair so thick and curly…”
—While I Live by John Marsden, p. 267
. . .
What self-respecting teenager goes around mentally cataloging her parents’ genitalia? There has been no indication prior to this that the family was nudists or really at all comfortable with their own bodies let alone viewing each others’. There hasn’t been any weird family sex rituals to account for this. Nothing. I seriously read the passage like four times trying to figure out if I was making it up (it was quite late). Then this morning I tried some Google searches to see what other people had to say about this bizarre turn of events when Ellie Linton suddenly got real about her dad’s penis and her mom’s nipples. Incredibly I found virtually nothing. There’s this one comment on a blog (final comment) about how weird it is in response to that whole scrotum thing in The Power of Lucky but THAT WAS IT. I am so confused about this entire thing. Confused and baffled and kind of disgusted. I mean I have now read eight of these stupid books. I am committed. There are only two left and I’m curious what will happen next (now that she’s bested the stupid lawyer and still doesn’t know who the Scarlet Pimple is–though I am pretty sure it’s Bronte.) But I also kind of don’t want to let myself in for any more of this terrible writing and weird left-field family nudity fest. And, I just discovered, the library doesn’t even have the final book in the series. Really, library? You are letting me down.
Seriously, why is the penis CURIOUS?