Debut Debates: Pretty Little Liars

Pretty Little Liars by Sara ShepardCame out: August 21, 2007Pages: 304Publisher: HarperTeen

Many say it's addictive; some say it's inappropriate. Some say it's great; others say it's trash. Who will win the debate? This is my meme: the Debut Debates. While I may not always feature "debuts" per se, I will debate about some of the most loved (and hated) young adult books. These are the books that everybody talks about. Here are my sides of the argument.

Positive:

It's filled with drama.

Who doesn't love a good, dramatic books? Girls, especially. We eat it up, I swear. These books have been really popular all because the DRAMA! It's great!

It has a mystery, unlike the rest of drama books (ahem, the Clique, anyone?)

You find yourself with your eyes glued to the page, frantically taking in words. You find yourself screaming at the book, "OH MY GOD!" or "JUST FIGURE OUT WHO'S 'A' ALREADY! I WANT TO KNOW!" at the novel. You might even have a marathon session camped out on your couch, your mind spinning in a billion different directions as new clues and secrets are revealed.

It has a successful TV show backing it.

Hello? Who hasn't seen the addictive TV show with billions of fans? I come to school on Tuesday morning and the first thing I hear is "did you see PLL last night." Why, no I haven't. Why not? Addressed in the negatives.

Negatives:

It's completely inappropriate.

There is all mentions of sex, abuse, drugs, alcohol, etc,. Hannah wants to lose her virginity, Emily is homosexual, Aria is having an affair with a teacher, and Spencer hooks up with her sister's boyfriend. Scandal all around and definitely not appropriate for young adults.

The writing is weak.

All Pretty Little Liars is is constant brand-name-dropping and putdowns. Endless mentions of "b*tch", "sh*t", "f*ck", etc,. It's like an older version of the Clique with horrifying shameful behavior. The plot has literally nothing going on for it.

It's spinning in so many different directions.

First it's Emily discovering her sexuality, Hannah dealing with her eating disorder and debating losing her virginity, and all that "usual"  teen scandal (not in real life). But then comes the mysterious text messages? And then comes murder? Seriously? Pick to a genre and stick to it.

My opinion:

It's pretty good. I do love the mystery and the scandal, but it is DEFINITELY not recommended for younger teens. If you are a mature 13, fine, but for an average teen, I'd do late fourteen and up. However, as my friend's mom put it, "I'd rather they learn what not to do and then go face the world than be ignorant." Good book, bad messages, but overall good and a satisfying, dramatic mystery that is sure to be among the favorites of many teen girls.