Looking For Alibrandi and the Teen in Me

9780140360462Another Australian classic that I finally read. Looking for Alibrandi by Melina Marchetta is hilarious, smart, and a perfect depiction of teen life and being an Australian of visibly ethnic descent, meaning non-British. So accurate and relatable that I thought this book was made in the early 2000s…but the book came out in 1992 and I thought “Wow, not much has changed since the 90s. Is Australia in some suspended time dimension thing?” Very modern.

Looking for Alibrandi is about a teen named Josephine Alibrandi who has high standards and has issues with her place in society (torn between being an Australian and honouring her Italian heritage and on top of that, she has an overbearing grandmother but a loving relationship with her single mother), boys, being an outcast but vocal member at school, and her relationship with her father is shaky since they never met until she’s at the end of her high school years and she’s angry that he abandoned her and her mother all those years ago.

Alibrandi is just trying to form her identity and find her place, finding her.

There’s a lot to learn.

I found myself reminiscing about my not-so-long-ago teen life which wasn’t as great as Alibrandi’s – I wish it was. But in some ways, I’m still a teen at heart and still in the transition of growing up. Plus Alibrandi made sure that I would be forever loyal to YA fiction.

Another interesting thing is Alibrandi’s worth not being defined by a guy even though at times, she comes out as clingy and over-dramatic towards the love interest but she’s growing up. Another reason to read this masterpiece.


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