Mad Love

Gr 8 Up—"What does a person do when confronted with a situation that is either madness or magic?" This is the very question that 16-year-old Alice Amorous asks herself. As the daughter of novelist Belinda Amorous, the Queen of Romance, things had been going so well. Then Belinda has a nervous breakdown and is hospitalized for bipolar disorder. Now not only must Alice fend for herself, but the publishing company is also threatening to take back the $100,000 advance unless a new romance novel appears before the August 31st deadline. Enter a pale boy named Errol who claims to be Cupid himself, insisting that Alice must pen the veritable version of the greatest love story ever told: his romance with Psyche. Alice may have just stumbled upon her mother's latest novel. Selfors is adept at making Alice a sympathetic and believable character. She keeps the pace going with the near-miss moments between Alice and her love interest, Tony. The story takes place in Seattle in the midst of a stifling, humid summer, which creates an atmosphere appropriate for Alice's situation. The story may seem like a lighthearted teen romance novel, but at moments it turns contemplative when dealing with Belinda's mental and Errol's physical illness. The author leaves readers wondering whether or not Errol is mad for believing that he is, in fact, Cupid or whether there is some magic in the world after all.—Kimberly Castle, Medina County District Library, OH
Alice is busy concealing the fact that her mom, a famous romance writer, is a patient at a mental hospital. But she's more frantic after she meets Errol, a.k.a. Cupid, who demands that Alice write his story before he dies. Some supernatural elements--e.g., Alice's ability to see people's auras--go unexplained and are superfluous to the otherwise solid love story.

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