Book: Girl Parts
Author: John M. Cusick
Release date: August 10th, 2010
"Hello, David. My name is Rose. It’s a pleasure to meet you. We are now entering minute two of our friendship. According to my Intimacy Clock, a handshake is now appropriate…"
David and Charlie are opposites. David has a million friends, online and off. Charlie is a soulful outsider, off the grid completely. But neither feels close to anybody. When David’s parents present him with a hot Companion bot to encourage healthy bonds and treat "dissociative disorder," he can’t get enough of luscious red-headed Rose — and he can’t get it soon. Companions come with strict intimacy protocols, and whenever he tries anything, David gets an electric shock. Severed from the boy she was built to love, Rose turns to Charlie, who finds he can open up, knowing Rose isn’t real. With Charlie’s help, the ideal "companion" is about to become her own best friend.
Review: An intriguing debut, and an interesting idea.
With the narrative jumping from David to Charlie to Rose (third person narrative for all three), Cusick lets the reader dive into the story from every angle possible.
David is your clichéd rich snobby prep, and he's having some social issues. After a girl commits suicide via webcam, everyone becomes concerned about many of the teens who seem to not be reacting the right way. When he receives Rose to help "socialize" him, he's a bit angry at first. He'd give anything to get rid of her, but then slowly warms up to her. When he's with Rose, it's a tad bit easier to semi-like David, because he's a different guy with her. Rose is probably the more interesting character, and amusing as she learns how to be a teenager (let alone how to be a human). Charlie, however, almost seemed bland in comparison, and in the end, I didn't care for him. He's fairly average, almost too average, and because of that he's not memorable.
The plot is definitely unique and unlike anything I've read, but it does have some flaws and parts that could have been tightened up.
Highlights: I love the uniqueness. It was such a fascinating and different way of life, and I think Cusick really conveyed that well. Rose was by far the best part of the story, because her innocence and curiosity are very endearing and it's easy to root for her.
Lowlights: Some points got to be confusing, and I would have loved a bit more depth to the characters. I feel like with this story it almost gets somewhere great at times, but then other times it just goes back to average. I had such high hopes that this novel would be epic, and it didn't quite hit the mark.