Ann, Not Annie is a well written YA (young adult) fictional novel by Sage Steadman. I read this book in a very short time and the actual story is 272 pages long. What I love most about this book is the style of writing the author implemented. I am a huge fan of the narrative style of telling stories and when done well its a joy to read and this was indeed a joy to read. The voice of the narrator took on the right tones and themes through out the book making for a very fluid read.
The story itself is of a teenage girl named Annie who prefers to be called Ann. She is still in high school and going through some major emotional and mental strain. She is dealing with grief, abandonment issues, loneliness and some teenage girl drama. The narrator follows her story of struggling in school with regular visits to detention and the school counsellor, less than an ideal living situation at home, taking care of her brother and dealing with a potential for falling in love and the glamour/seduction of being one of the popular kids.
Ann not Annie goes through a process that almost breaks her while reading Henry David Thoreau’s “Walden pond” (Which has definitely joined my reading list thanks to this book). Luckily for her, her small circle of friends whom she thought she had lost were still there for her when she was ready to let them in again.
I respect Authors who brave topics that we as a society are quick to skirt or push aside for political reasons or deem too heavy for a certain audience. Ann (not Annie but also Annie lol) is a teenager who through no choice of hers had to experience grief and loss (mostly alone)and if we think teenagers shouldn’t be exposed to these topics, then what happens to the “Ann’s” of this world who are unprepared and yet plunged into similar situations.
This book is a perfect gift for both young adults, parents, teachers, counsellors etc to help breach that gap and even open up an avenue for these conversations to be had.
It was a great read and I recommend it to everyone.