Dear Gossips,

Have you read Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell? Here’s my only complaint about the book: since I read it on my iPad, I couldn’t properly hug it. Hugging an iPad isn’t the same as hugging a real book. And as corny as it sounds, it deserves to be hugged. Eleanor is a big girl with big red hair. Park is an Asian boy who doesn’t fit in in Nebraska. Not enough people are writing stories about these kinds of people. And when someone does actually write a story about people we know, and can relate to, people we might all have been at one point or another, the Parents Action League decides to ban it. Because the teenagers are dropping too many swears. And they kiss and grope each other.

Sure. Let’s ignore all the beauty that we can share with each other through words – the power of friendship to bring us through the bleakest of experiences, the hope it can give you when you’ve been accustomed to despair, the opportunities it can present when nothing seems possible – and get all huffy because a 16 year old decides to express her frustration by cursing. Really? Because teens are perfect? Eleanor and Park aren’t perfect. They make mistakes all the time. Park, in particular, is one of the most wonderful drawn male characters I’ve met in a long, long time. Because Park keeps trying. And I can’t understand why that’s a problem.

I’m interviewing Rainbow Rowell on The Social today. I think I might cry I’m so excited.

Yours in gossip,