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Okay Paperback – October 24, 2008
About the Author
Katherine Marple was born and raised in suburbia Connecticut. She struggled through her young and adolescent years and used journaling to organize her thoughts. She continues to embrace what challenges life tosses her way and she chronicles them for others to explore. Though her stories are fiction, there are many real elements involved that capture the hearts of readers. Katherine Marple is helping to find the cure for type 1 diabetes and is working on her seventh book. She resides in Connecticut with her husband and two daughters.
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I found the writing here to be strong and the character very sympathetic, and never pathetic or self-pitying (which is a deal-breaker for me). I felt I was befriending this girl, and I empathized with her, rather than sympathizing for her. My only suggestion is that some of the exposition be a little shorter as it bordered occassionally on being repetitive. But this is a small thing, and it doesn't detract from a great read by a promising young author, whose works I will continue to read, I have the feeling, for years to come. This book caused me to put Wretched, Marple's other work of fiction, on my shortlist, and I look forward to reading and reviewing it soon.
Katherine Marple's writing, though, is a wonderful reminder of what a true storyteller is capable of.
The story was addictive because it felt like I was an unmentioned character within her world. Written at any age this is a very good book, but it's certainly even more impressive to know how young she was when she wrote it.
My advice: hop on board the 'Katherine Marple Fan Express' now people because I have a feeling we are in for a wonderful ride.
In the beginning of the book Marple mentions that she developed the idea for the story as a teenager, envisioning it as a screenplay for a film. It never got made, but the book is sufficient. That the tale started as a screenplay certainly makes sense, as the propulsive nature of the pacing is something well-suited for film. If you are in the mood for a quick, but very emotional read, than I would certainly recommend this one. I'm glad I discovered this talented writer, I will be reading more of her work in the future!
In Katherine Marple's novel, Okay, the sixteen-year-old unnamed female protagonist makes choices which swiftly alter the course of her life, and takes her best friend, and protector, London with her. After setting up the pair as best friends, living in the same neighborhood, in the same style homes, the differences are revealed. London has a loving, supportive family to come home to, while the protagonist fears her alcoholic, abusive father. Coming home late from a graduation party with London, the protagonist attempts to sneak into the house avoiding her father's wrath, unsuccessfully. When he has beaten and choked her, and threatened her with more abuse and potential rape, the protagonist runs to her best friend to enlist his help.
"Please," I begged. "Let's go now."
He solemnly nodded his head, stroked my hair, and whispered, "Okay."
Having convinced London to abandon his loving home, his college career, and essentially his future to run away with her, the protagonist wastes no time in making bad decision after bad decision along the way. Drugs, alcohol, and sex with relative strangers, and all the while London is there to pick up the pieces. The protagonist is on a roller coaster of emotion from the freedom of living a life she has never known before to the despair over some of the choices she has made.
Marple presents a strong, clear point of view with her unnamed protagonist, and while I found the pacing to be a little quick, lacking in emotional depth with the heavy topics the book covers, the voice is unwavering and draws the reader along. For the bulk of the book, the lack of a name for the main character was not an issue, but a few times felt a bit gimmicky. The narrator herself explains the lack of name.
My name isn't important. What is important is helping someone hope for a better view, at the end of his pain. That is the purpose of my story; to help someone heal.
Reviewed for the LL Book Review