Review: Going Vintage by Lindsey Leavitt

Saturday, January 19, 2013
Title: Going Vintage
Author: Lindsey Leavitt
Genre: young-adult, contemporary
Series: N/A
Pages: 330 (Nook ARC edition)
Published: expected March 26, 2013
Source: publishers via NetGalley
Rating: 3/5

Sixteen-year-old Mallory loves her boyfriend, Jeremy. Or at least likes him more than she's ever liked any other boy. She's suree feels the same way. Until she happens upon his online Authentic Life game and discovers he's cheating on her Mallory's life is falling apart and technology is the cause. And then she finds a list, written by her grandma when she was Mallory's age. All her grandma had to worry about was sewing dresses and planning dinner parties. Things were so much simpler in the 1960s. And there's nothing on the list that Mallory couldn't do herself. Maybe it's time for Mallory to go vintage and find the answers to her modern-day problems.

I hate to damn a book with faint praise, but the only thing that came to my mind upon finishing this novel was: blandly inoffensive? Simple, forgettable, if sometimes charming? There are characters that are sometimes funny, sometimes flat, but they never really approach what I think of as three-dimensional? Underdeveloped and stiff initially, there's a lot of room for growth in that department. They came, they did their thing to various repercussions, but none really interested me worth investing in? A lot of what happened came off as predictable, or just silly, but Going Vintage wasn't bad - it was just sort of there. I liked it enough to continue through to the end, but not enough that I would recommend for a friends or another reader to buy. Borrow? Sure. But to spend that hard-earned cash on a novel that is harmless and so reminiscent of many other YA contemporaries? Not so much.

One day and done, and I doubt I'll think back on or even remember this in a month. Going Vintage has its moments - of cuteness, or exasperation, but it's hardly a stand-out effort. Basically, this was 340 pages of fluff. I didn't have to think too hard, pay that much attention, care at all. There is nothing I can point at and say was wrong with it, but neither is there anything I can point out as right or amazing about it. Inoffensive. Yeah, I'm going to have to go with that for my overall impression. The main character isn't too stupid to live, the romance is not the worst I've read - even this month - but I'm hard pressed to find anything about it that was wholly unique. The 'going vintage' aspect might work, but it didn't really pull me into the story all that much, either. 

I have so little to say about this, that I can't really go on much more. It was minimally engaging, mildly interesting, and all-too-often predictable. This failed to really make a lasting impression, the way really good contemporary YA should, like with anything Melina Marchetta writes. Jellicoe Road left me wrecked emotionally. It took me days to get over that book and start another. With Going Vintage, for me, it was much more of a nonevent when it was all said and done. Cover closed, a few minutes of thought and it was onto the next book. Going Vintage is inoffensive, it's not horrible, but it had opportunities and potential that were just missed. Lindsey Leavitt has some talent as an author, but it wasn't used to her best efforts here, and that is lamentable.


  1. Aww, I'm so sorry to hear this was such a bland read! I have to still pick it up for review, so maybe if I go into it with altered expectations I'll enjoy it more. *sigh* We'll see. On the other hand, you're reading A Face Like Glass right now which is AMAZING! Seriously, there's so much to discuss afterwards and the plot twists are mind-blowing! :D I can't wait to hear your thoughts on that one for sure!

  2. Boo. Sorry this one didn't work all that well for you. But...your review makes me only want to read this more, because you know what? I kind of love fluff! This is the perfect book to read between two serious novels to reset me and give me a boost. I like to read these sometimes. I'll save it for one of those instances. :)


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