Monday, August 15, 2011


Today, I am cranky. Crankier than usual. Over the weekend I was duped on several levels, and it all has to do with the book you see pictured above. Enticing cover, huh? That's what I thought? That drew me in first, followed by the back cover blurb claiming the book was an "exploration of the controversial Waldorf School movement." BIG FAT LIE!

Where to begin? I ran into a Waldorf teacher last year, and was intrigued by the system of education that is really a lifestyle. While educating the mind, Waldorf schools promote physical and spiritual wellness by introducing concepts not honored (and often forbidden) in public education. Much of what Waldorf leaders believe are things we might consider New Age, or a natural lifestyle....vegetarianism, midwifery home birth, non-traditional religious ideas.

Anyway, the book has little to do with the school, other than much of the action takes place in a
Waldorf building. Other than that, there is nothing I would consider enlightening about the school's philosophy.

Dupe #2. This book holds great promise in the first few chapters, and although a new novelist, Rebecca Coleman can write. The main character's here-and-now story is woven with flashback chapters of her childhood in Germany where she learned to be a good girl by reading stories of Der Struwwelpeter, a character who lurks, watching for and punishing bad little boys and girls. There is some nice literary history, and descriptions of the Bavarian countryside in the the beginning.

But, as the novel progresses, the flashback chapters dwindle, and once, Judy, the Waldorf teacher takes up with a 16-year old student, I found myself saying more than once, "Jeeze, this could be a Harlequin romance." Well guess what, it is a Harlequin romance disguised as one of the company's imprints, MIRA. Instead of the usual mass market size, this crummy book, with the escalating sex scenes, and no redeeming values, has been disguised with all the trapping of a quality trade paperback.

So, why didn't I stop once I discovered the grand deception? What else it there to do while waiting for Easy-Off do its job? Actually, I was quite invested by the time I caught on, and I really hoped that good taste and good writing would win out in the end. I believed that the adult would come to her senses, or that the school would figure out what all the funny noises coming from Judy's classroom after hours were, or that the boy's parents would question the callous swagger with which he walked. But nope, none of that. Just scene after scene of Zack murmuring "Judy, Judy, Judy." I'm not kidding..."Judy, Judy, Judy."

So, here's the deal...the first person who emails me at can have this crummy advance reader copy. I'll wait patiently for the notes to begin to roll in.

Thanks for stopping by.