Sunday, February 19, 2012

Just For Fun 2012 Reading Challenge: Jay's Journal by Anonymous

Jay's Journal is the book I chose for my February selection of the Just For Fun 2012 Reading Challenge. You can click here to see my complete list on Goodreads.

Book Info:

ISBN #: 978-1442419933
Page Count: 230
Copyright: 1979
Publisher: Simon Pulse

Book Summary:
(Taken from back cover)

Jay thought he could handle anything. The first time he took drugs was for fun. But what started as an escape quickly spiraled into a haze of addiction. That was just the beginning of the dangerous path that ultimately led Jay to take his own life.

Mandy's Review:

I never knew there was a companion diary to Go Ask Alice until I went to Books-A-Million and saw Jay's Journal sitting beside Go Ask Alice on the bookshelf. I was curious, so I purchased Jay's Journal the same day I bought Go Ask Alice.

Let's make some quick comparisons between Go Ask Alice and Jay's Journal...

Some of the similarities:
  • Both books were copies of a troubled teenager's diary
  • Both teenagers lived in the 1970s
  • Both teenagers committed suicide
  • Both claimed to want to turn from their troubled existences, but neither had the willpower to make the changes
  • Both converted others to their lifestyle and then regretted doing so later on
Some of the differences:
  • Jay's Journal is written by a teenage boy, whereas Go Ask Alice was written by a teenage girl (obvious, right?)
  • Alice was mainly involved in drugs, whereas Jay dabbled in a little bit of drugs (unknown to him) but his main addiction was the occult.
  • Alice ran away from home, Jay did not

I did like that Jay's Journal covered a different addiction than Go Ask Alice. The occult is a very serious activity to participate in. Often times, it isn't taken seriously enough. While the occult is not talked about as prevalently nowadays (at least from what I see), it is still an ever present danger to people.

The majority of this book sounded more realistic than Go Ask Alice did to me, but there were still parts that I felt like someone took literary liberties with. There are excerpts that just do not sound like something a teenage boy would say ... even in a private journal. Then there were several passages where the dates of the entries just didn't jive for me.

So, overall, I liked this book better than Go Ask Alice, but not enough to recommend it be read by others.

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