The Difference Between You and Me by Madeleine George. School outsider Jesse, a lesbian, is having secret trysts with Emily, the popular student council. The Difference Between You and Me. Jesse cuts her own hair with a Swiss Army knife. She wears big green fisherman's boots. She's the founding (and only). Read The Difference Between You and Me Online PDF Pages this book written by Madeleine George whom known as an author and have wrote many.
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Sweet, tender, and true!" - Laurie Halse AndersonJesse cuts her own hair with a Swiss Army knife. She wears big green fisherman's boots. She's the founding. derscontcyptuhors.gq: The Difference Between You and Me (): Madeleine George: Books. The Difference Between You and Me book. Read reviews from the world's largest community for readers. Jesse cuts her own hair with a Swiss Army knife.
I was really hoping for young love overcoming all odds. This was, frankly, the lesbian book that I checked out of the library because I didn't expect that any of the other ones I got would be happy. Jesse suspects her family will hate Emily, and they do.
The Difference Between You and Me
It's like they had this opportunity to overcome the odds, and then they decided it wasn't worth the effort. It might be realistic, and maybe they were just doomed to failure, but it was still very different from what I'd hoped it might be. I'm disappointed, I guess. I feel like there was so much more they could have overcome, if they were willing to try.
And I'm sick of watching gay characters finish out their stories single, dead, or straight. View all 5 comments. Jan 17, Tatiana marked it as abandoned Shelves: Didactic, full of stereotypes and too message driven. View 2 comments. Apr 01, Sarah rated it it was ok Shelves: I had some serious problems with this book.
First, Jesse and every other character is a flaming stereotype. Everyone is a liberal radical who fights the system and listens to NPR and has quirky accessories and causes. That, or they're an objectivist Wyatt, gay best friend if they're both gay, does that stereotype count? Is there a lesb I had some serious problems with this book. Is there a lesbian best friend trend?
Is that a thing? It got old very fast. It felt like ships passing in the night. My expectations from the cover blurb weren't met at all. I keep being told their making out is "awesome" and "the best thing ever" and "so intense" drinking game with water or juice for the under-aged, of course: I suppose that's the point- their connection is purely physical and they even mention that they don't talk to each other normally and that's why view spoiler [ the relationship ultimately fails hide spoiler ] - but it just came off wrong to me.
Third, the way she chose to narrate characters. Emily herself was a disappointment.
She's the only almost the only character we hear from first-person and this probably contributed to why I spent the whole book wanting to slap her. We only ever hear from Jesse in third, which worked and was alright, but Jesse's boring. She has little flaws Jesse came off as the empty stereotype that she is, which is disappointing because she had so many opportunities not to be.
She has a mom in remission from cancer, she's in a sort-of-relationship with a closet case is Emily bi? What is up with you?? Why are you so mean? What caused your about-face? Never resolved. Also, there was this little passage about which I'm still not sure how I feel: Because it's a to-do list?
And it's not Jesse making it? Ba ha ha. Was this an inadvertent pun? Or was it an intentional stealth pun? If the latter, four for you, Glen Coco!
You go Glen Coco But back on point. Emily and Jesse: Yes, I just made a couple name portmanteau. I blame the Internet. Jesse and Esther dance together at the end Were they dancing as friends??
Damn you, Madeleine George! This was the main secondary conflict in the story that underscored the tense relationship of Emily and Jesse Will the coalition of weirdos Jesse calls herself that raise enough money to combat the StarMart store and stop it from coming to their town?
Will the school's corporate sponsorship end? Mar 20, Emily rated it liked it. The cover featured here is so different from the cover on my copy of the book. I don't like either of them, actually.
I have mixed feelings about this book. What I liked: A couple of the characters, particularly Jesse, ended up being more complex than I initially anticipated. Jesse's parents are present and positively involved in her life. The themes of the book for example: The narrative manages to be simultaneously funny and affecting. Many of the "issues" in the book the dangers of large socially-irresponsible corporations, prejudice, parent-child relationships, cancer are substantive. And Emily and Jesse's mutual desire is, for the most part, believable.
What I didn't like: The entire book felt too contrived to me, too pre-packaged. Too many obvious YA tropes and characters that, in the end, were too stock. Although I wanted to imagine Jesse and Emily and Esther and everyone else in the book as real people, I just couldn't.
They were always types. So, in the end, I was disappointed. I'd recommend the book to teen readers, but not zealously. Jan 29, Richie Partington rated it it was amazing. Richie's Picks: Jesse's father lays a restraining hand lightly on his wife's arm. You have every right to those feelings. But handling those feelings by crawling through a bathroom window--' "'Unsuccessfully,' her mother points out.
This bathroom-window Keystone Kops routine? I refuse to attend them and in this quote unquote free country I shouldn't have to.
I can't believe I have to explain this to you guys! Pep rallies are fascist demonstrations of loyalty and I am not loyal to my school. I hate my school. I'm the opposite of loyal to it. If I wouldn't end up in jail, I would blow it up. She's a lawyer; she can't resist a counterargument.
She gives Jesse a look of sincere apology. I'm sure if you were a terrorist, you'd make a wonderful one.
Jessie Halberstam, author of student manifestos and fashion-challenged lesbian, an ultimate high school outsider, and Emily Miller, the girl of the uber-popular boyfriend and heralded participant in all sorts of school and community functions, an ultimate high school insider, are in an intensely passionate, utterly secret relationship.
But what happens when Jesse is humiliated by Emily's popular friends in the girl's room, right in front of Emily, who cannot say a word? And what happens when Jesse becomes a leader in opposing corporate sponsorship of school dances and sports teams by a predatory big box discount chain that has actually been recruited for this purpose by politically-clueless Emily?
Author Madeleine George crafts an awesome tale that avoids the pitfalls of the overly-campy and the overly-sincere. Aug 09, Ab rated it it was ok Shelves: Ok, so I think I'm ready to review this book. I needed to get some space away from it, first. I guess it just pissed me off, more than anything. In Madeleine George fashion, the chapters alternate perspectives between main characters, much like "Looks". But seriously, someone as awesome and anti-establishment, pro-justic, anti-"The Man", and serious enough about her politics and sense of justice to guerilla post handmade posters all over the school It's just SO unbelievable and frustrating, that the book is just almost not worth reading at all!
Now I say "almost" because I don't presume to tell people what to read -- pick up this book, read it, and I want to know what others got from it; what redeeming qualities you found in it? Because I'm honestly at a loss. The main focus of this book should have been Esther - peaceful protesting, detention-getting, fuck-fakers attitude chick. She would've made this a much more interesting book.
This could have been a short story and gotten as much of a point or whatever across as it did in an entire book. Just pissed me off. View 1 comment. Oct 16, Lori rated it really liked it.
I thought it was mostly going to be a love story about Emily coming to terms with who she is. I really loved Jesse. She was very complex and very unique. That made her feel extremely believable to me. Throughout the story Jesse grows. I had a lot of fun watching her journey and I think we could all stand to be a little more like Jesse. Emily on the other hand….
She is vice president of student council and very serious about it. She also has a very serious boyfriend, but she meets Jesse once a week for a short make out session. She was very unlikeable, but I think she was supposed to be. It was a great way to show the contrast between them. Props to Madeleine George for writing such very different but equally interesting characters.
I enjoyed every second of it and I think you will too! Jul 31, Becky Shaknovich rated it it was amazing. I really loved this book, contrary to popular goodreads reviewer opinion. The makeout sessions are described in an intense, realistic way, which I feel teen readers deserve.
Sexual activity does not have to be glossed over in YA books. I'm not sure if teens will really relate to the story line, because there is a strong focus on politics. The "differences" that teens usually face in books and probably in real life, from my I really loved this book, contrary to popular goodreads reviewer opinion.
The "differences" that teens usually face in books and probably in real life, from my experience have to do with popularity vs. However, in The Difference Between You and Me, the main difference between the two girls who are having a mostly physical relationship are their political beliefs and ideologies, alongside the popular vs.
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Lusting for someone who does not fit into one's value system, and feeling conflicted or shameful over that, seems to me to be a problem we don't usually face until adulthood. Personally, I was able to relate to the difficulty of being in a secretive relationship and how that can wreak havoc on one's self-esteem. Plus, we all know I love liberal politics!
Any book that teaches young people about the value of local economy is a worthwhile read, in my opinion. Nov 15, Jennifer rated it it was ok Shelves: This book bummed me out.
Ostensibly it's about two high school girls, sophomore Jesse and junior Emily. Jesse is out and proud about being both queer and a weirdo; Emily is closeted, buttoned up, a striver. Their common ground is the time they secretly spend together every week making out in a library restroom.
When they find themselves on opposite sides of a controversy over a Walmart-like company moving into town questions arise about what their relationship means to each of them and what they This book bummed me out. When they find themselves on opposite sides of a controversy over a Walmart-like company moving into town questions arise about what their relationship means to each of them and what they expect of each other. And this is what bothered me: Despite allowing Emily to address the reader directly in a series of first person chapters, the book seemed to have no empathy or compassion for her.
Her closetedness was cast as a kind of moral failure when, come on, she's like sixteen years old! I don't love the idea of opposing the stigma around queerness by substituting a stigma around closetedness, but it's extra problematic in a YA novel aimed at queer kids, so, so many of whom are closeted for good reasons or just still in the process of sorting out their identities.
We can do better than giving those kids more reasons to feel badly about themselves. Apr 30, Kiwi rated it liked it Shelves: This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This one certainly hit the bill. I loved that it wasn't a coming out story; I've certainly read plenty of those, especially with teenage casts.
I enjoyed the tale enough.
It felt very high school in that not much actually seemed to be going on--let's face it, many high school experiences aren't extraordinarily plotty--but that it felt like a lot, with all these new feelings and realisations. It felt really organic for Jesse to be going from this activist-without-a-cause not that Standing Up for the Weirdos isn't a cause, it's just not a very particular one, especially in high school into an organised activist actually helping to host events. And again, that may hit home for me because I went through a similar growth experience, although a bit earlier on.
Esther's, at least, I enjoyed; Emily's drove me mad. Having been more of a Jesse in school with no extra attraction to the Emily's, that sort of POV does have the tendency to vex me. That said, I have come across more high-school-preppy characters that I've come to like anyway; Emily just drove me mad. She seemed set on ignorance and tried to flat-out manipulate Jesse; despite talking about being "soul mates" and things like that, she didn't seem to have much regard for Jesse at all when it came down to it.
I quite enjoyed Esther, though, even if she was just another obvious stereotype. I found her unflappable and quirky nature endearing. I loved her interactions with Jesse. Wyatt, as another stereotype, made me laugh; I had a Wyatt of my own once upon a time. Jesse's parents were glorious. I loved the bonding scenes over the bird-house, both her father and her mother. I wasn't as disappointed with the little-wrapped-up ending as I thought I would be. B was successful - but that would have dragged the book out for another long time.
I liked seeing Jesse break it off with Emily without seeing if any new sort of relationship would form between Jesse and Esther and I would be pleased either way. It's also very high school to have things NOT come together in this perfectly rounded story arc, so I didn't mind reading it that way. In the end it was a nice, quick and easy read with some substance and tender moments tucked inside even with the stereotypes, tropes and eye-rolling dialect.
It's not a book I would go tell all my friends to read pronto, but if I saw one pick it up randomly and start flipping through, I'd smile. Mar 08, Les rated it liked it. Our library has this on their shelf of books recommended by staff, so I decided to try it. It's an interest story about the awkward relationship between 2 very different high school girls. Jesse is a lesbian who is out to her parents, who are both former activists they met when they were being fingerprinted after being arrested at a protest.
She is the sole member of the Our library has this on their shelf of books recommended by staff, so I decided to try it. She attends the fall dance in a guy's tux and the fishing boots and meets Emily, her polar opposite. She is a hardworking over-achiever, with her time taken up with being student body vice president, library assistant, apprentice nursing program, studying Chinese, etc.
She also has a boyfriend she has literally known her whole life, but somehow she and Jesse wind up kissing in the girl's bathroom. A year later, they still met clandestinely to kiss a couple of times per week working around Emily's schedule. No one else knows, including Emily's boyfriend.
Despite Jesse's attempts to take things further, kissing is as far as it goes. They were rebuffed in their initial attempt to build in this small town but are looking to regroup and try again. Emily suggests they download goodwill by sponsoring the upcoming school fall dance and the athletic programs.
When word gets out, Jesse and Emily find themselves on opposite sides of the issue. Jesse sees the loss of local small businesses and sweatshop jobs overseas. She joins a girl named Esther in mobilizing local protests against StarMart. Emily sees the financial benefits to the school she's in charge of the dance and their corporate donations to developing countries. Neither wants to hurt the other but they're also not willing to conceed on their beliefs. Can their secret relationship survive, or is it even worth trying given the gulf that has come between them?
A little heavy on the anti-WalMart side. Jesse's side's arguments are always treated as rational, whereas Emily and the school principal only focus on how much the school is going to get out of the deal.
In addition, Jesse's best friend's father is a corporate shill who is totally derogatory and insulting to Jesse and her group's concerns. Jun 12, Liviania rated it really liked it. Madeleine George's sophomore book shifts between three points of view. It's a little distracting at first since both Emily and Esther's sections are told in first person and Jesse's is in third. But George's writing keeps the transition from being too jarring.
Jesse Halberstam is out and proud. She goes around the school in an awful pair of boots and a homemade haircut hanging up posters with her manifesto for the liberation of weirdos. But she has a secret. Every Tuesday she meets Emily Miller a Madeleine George's sophomore book shifts between three points of view. Every Tuesday she meets Emily Miller at the library to make out. Emily's in the closet and staying there. She even has a boyfriend, Mike McDade. Meanwhile, Jesse meets Esther Meinz in detention and the two join forces in activism.
StarMart wants to put a store in their town. They're having trouble getting land, so they're trying to put pressure on the town to let them end. That includes funding the Vander High School's dance and athletic programs. Emily, the student council vice president, orchestrated the corporate sponsorship. Jesse and Emily may be in love, but the closet and their opposing political views are tearing them apart.
At times I thought Esther's point of view wasn't needed, but I thought the character was very important to the story. Everyone thinks she and Jesse are together, but neither of them show any sign of being interested. In fact, her sexuality is never discussed. She and Jesse are simply friends, and as Esther never brings her dating life up, it's none of Jesse's business. They connect in plenty of other ways, including their experiences with each of their mother's breast cancer.
I loved Jesse's relationship with her parents. Fran and Arthur pay attention to their daughter and are their to scold her when she gets in trouble. It's quite a change from the usual absentee parents in young adult novels.
But even better, Jesse says things she shouldn't to her parents. She's fifteen, she's frustrated, and it is so hard to relate to your parents at that age. And for all the romance fans out there, there are some very swoony scenes. And the final manifesto, about doing small things in big groups, made me feel better about only pledging a quarter per hour.
If all book bloggers worked together, we could make a difference in worldwide literacy and access to books. The anti-corporate and self-confidence messages are gr 2. The anti-corporate and self-confidence messages are great, but, when the message is the best part, it means the story is lacking.
The writing, characterization, and plot were pretty much meh across the board. Other than that, the highlight was definitely the passionate kissing frequently engaged in by Emily and Jesse. Apr 02, Paula Gallagher rated it liked it. While this seems to be more Jesse's story, the chapters belonging to her are told in the third person. Jesse's the manifesto-writing paper-the-school lesbian activist-wannabe looking for equal human rights and acceptance.
She's flawed, interesting and likable. Her downfall is the fair Emily, the overachieving student council vice president with a long term boyfriend.
Emily gets to speak to the reader in the first person, and tell us all about how hot she gets for Jesse, and how much she enjoys their secret makeout sessions in the library bathroom. And then there's Esther, the quirky protester who idolizes Joan of Arc, who just might be a better match for Jesse. Throw in a subplot where Emily courts a WalMart-type mega store to sponsor the school dance, and none of the relationship issues resolve in an overtly satisfying way.
In other words, unoriginal. Very nice read. I enjoyed learning about all the three main characters trying to find their way through high school, growing into themselves.
I did find the narrative choices odd. Different POVs for the different character sections, the book is told from the perspective of the three main characters, though mainly Jesse. Why were Emily's sections the only ones written in first person?
I felt it was a disservice to that high-strung character to not get a more objective view of her. But I did enjoy th Very nice read. But I did enjoy this one. At times funny, at times awkward it got the feeling of being a teen and growing up right. I did wonder last night how these three girls will fare in the future and I must say I wondered about Emily most. Mar 28, Sarah rated it it was ok Shelves: More on the biphobia in this book at my blog.
Sep 26, krispea rated it really liked it. I am not sure I can review this book. It's too sweet to review. Mar 23, TheBookSmugglers rated it liked it. After watching the most recent adaptation of the musical, I felt I needed to learn more about the subplot involving Marius and his friends and thus proceeded to read about the student-led Paris Uprising of From there, I started to think about student-led rebellions and revolts in general and the year and its many students protests all around the world in particular.
That seemed weird to me, considering how current affairs make for great topics to be passionate about. I thought: So I took it to Twitter as one does , asking for recommendations for YA books with political plots and got quite a few recommendations and loads of shout outs for The Difference Between You and Me.
So here we are. The Difference Between You and Me is exactly what I had in mind when I set out to ask for those recommendations and it is a prime example of how YA can delve in politics in complex, meaningful ways. The Difference Between You and Me is a book that explores political engagement in a variety of ways, both in the personal and public spheres. Jesse and Emily are in love with each other and have a passionate, lustful relationship, meeting once every week in secret. Emily is a closeted bi who feels she has much to lose if she comes out including her steady boyfriend and her position as vice-president of the student council.
Jesse becomes more and more involved in social activism and participates in a protest against a Wall-Mart type big corporation that is threatening local shops. This happens just as Emily starts to work for said corporation hoping to engage their help with school activities and thus, they find each other on opposite sides.
The two girls could not be more different — title reference! In a way both girls are very similar — they are both awesomely ambitious and interested in activism and they go after what they believe in. Their differences lie in their motivations and their approach: Jess is loud and passionate about equality and interested in public engagement of her ideas. She makes friends with Esther, a social activist who introduces her to a group of protesters widening the ways she can find political engagement.
My point here is to show how the book explores the idea that there are different ways to engage with politics, social activism and that things are …complicated and not black and white. As a closeted bi she is obviously not a good match for out-and-proud Jesse and the way the story develops shows this very firmly even as it portrays their angst over how despite everything, they desire each other so much and the making out here is awesomely graphic and hot.
At some schools those people might get teased or made to feel unwelcome, but at our school those kids are as welcome as any normal kids. I did not read Emily as the villain of the piece even though at times in comparison I felt the story set Jesse up as the main heroine — but this is definitely open for interpretation.
There are though, significant flaws here. Some characters are very stereotypical and one-sided. And even though I thought the writing was competent and realistic from a perspective of writing teens, the dialogue would at times, veer suddenly into teen-speak with a vengeance and it was rather off-putting: He nods eagerly.
If you know someone. That said, I actually loved it and how it is all about social activism and the heartfelt relationship between these two great girls. And if you think of any other stories like this one? Please do share your recommendations. Jun 11, Xanthe rated it liked it Shelves: The Difference Between You and Me left me with a mostly warm fuzzy feeling. Out-and-proud butch Jesse and closeted and bi Emily have been having regularly scheduled make out sessions that no one else in their high school lives can ever know about.
I am uncomfortable with how bi Emily is portrayed as cheating on her boyfriend by sneaking around with Jesse and being the most obviously self-deceptive in her first-person narration, which plays hard into negative stereotypes about bi people. Ultimately, I found this book uplifting as Jesse in third person negotiated her relationships with friends and family and discovered what she herself was willing to do fight injustice.
Oct 23, Heather rated it liked it Shelves: The Difference Between You and Me is a queer high school story that isn't a coming-out story: Jesse Halberstam is a sophomore, and she's already been out as a lesbian for a year.
She gets harassed at school because she's out and gay and butch and wears big clompy rubber fisherman's boots all the time. But that's not the center of the story, either. Jesse has a delicious secret: There's a problem, though: Emily has a boyfriend, and isn't out as bi, if she even is bi: Which is fine, when you pass as "normal" and don't have to deal with other people's labels and judgments of you.
Emily insists that Jesse keep their relationship a secret, and barely acknowledges Jesse in public, but Jesse's so smitten and the kissing is so good that she goes along with it.
But the desire they have for one another is basically the only thing Jesse and Emily have in common: Jesse papers the school with manifestos for her one person organization, NOLAW National Organization to Liberate All Weirdos , and Emily is the student-council vice-president whose pet project, this year, is getting corporate sponsorship for the school's athletic teams and dances.
On a superficial level, the novel answered most of my expectations very well. The characters were sometimes obnoxious, but in a very honest way. The characters were actually my favorite thing about the story.
They were all obviously trying very hard, in the really slow, painful way that we all try really hard and don't always succeed when we're fifteen or raising a fifteen-year-old. That aspect, of trying and grasping for something but never quite reaching it, felt very sincere to me, and in my opinion carried the novel.
The difference between you and me
This is very much focused around two or three high school sophomores and a freshman. I like YA, so that's okay, but I suspect that someone who doesn't would very quickly get tired of the awkward parental discussions and such. Generally speaking, it was a little bit funny, a little bit awkward, and all of the characters were trying so hard that I couldn't help but root for them. I'd be lying if I didn't say I didn't enjoy it. But, on any more than a superficial level, there were a lot of aspects of the book that just didn't work for me.
Unlike a lot of people, I didn't dislike Emily. I do think that putting her chapters in first person did an enormous disservice to the character. Emily is tightly-wound, high-strung and over-achieving to all possible extremes.
First person not only brings out her many annoying qualities, but it doesn't let us see very much of who Emily is as a person. This is a girl who spends an awful lot of time lying to herself, so of course she uses her monologues to try to convince us of that.
I think another very very tight third person PoV would have cut down on the annoyance issues, and given us more of a sense of the reality of her life. Honestly, we know more about Jesse's two friends' lives than Emily's, which is painful when Emily is supposed to be a protagonist.
Which is really the main problem I have: George never really commits to Emily. This is really Jesse's journey, which is fine except that view spoiler [her journey seems to mostly involve that everything about her relationship with Emily has been bad for her.The plot moved at a reasonable pace, and every word seemed very deliberate.
There were some things that struck me as a little bit strange from the beginning.
Get A Copy. Yes, she's a selfish twit for pretending not to know Jesse at school, but other aspects of her character, like enjoying her work on student council activities, is also presented as clear evidence of what a selfish twit she is.
Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Please enter your name. I thought it was mostly going to be a love story about Emily coming to terms with who she is.