The book follows Liza Winthrop, a straight-A student at Foster Academy, a conservative private school in 1980's New York City. When Liza goes to the Metropolitan Musuem of Art to study architecture, she runs into Annie Kenyon, a charismatic fun-loving girl from the other side of the city. The two immidietely connect and begin spending lots of time together. However, the two begin developing feelings for each other and struggle to come to terms with what the outside world sees about them and how they feel about each other. When a vicious homophobic assault is launched against the girls after they are caught in intimacy, they struggle to stay connected with each other and their families. However, they gain the assistance of two lesbian teachers who fight to help them live their lives freely and safely. Together, they learn that love will conquer all fear and that allies can be found in the most unexpected places.
I was soooooo happy when I found Annie on my Mind at the library. It's the most iconic piece of lesbian fiction written to date and I was eager to read it. I was also terrified- It's a book writen about lesbians in the 80's, would it be another sad ending? The answer, thank god is no! There is a good portion of angst and a hell of a lot of homophobia, but the ending. It's happy, they are still in love, and all is right with the world. This book tackles issues like identification, rule following, and societal pressure very well. It's an older book, so the setting isnt very modern. I'm happy to report that these charecters have personalites that click while also contrasting. Even though this is a romance novel, the girls have their own personalities and interests and exist without each other in a healthy way. Annie is outgoing and pushes Liza to have fun while Liza is the levelheaded protector of the two. All in all, a very good read. I would definately recommend this book to others, especially gay women who just want a happy ending.
Reviewed by Claire Skye, Grade 9
Glendale Central Library