I am Y.P.R.'s Boring Logo
Fun, Fickle Fiction (for Free!) Fact, Opinion, Essay, & Review Spectacular Features, Calendrical Happenings, Media Gadflies Poetry & Lyric Advice, How To, & Self-Help Listicles Semi-Frequent Columns Correspondence (Letters To and Letters From) Interviews The Book Club Letter from the Editors Disquieting Modern Trends Birthday Cards to Celebrities New & Noteworthy The Y.P.aRt Gallery Et Cetera, Et Cetera, Et Cetera The Y.P.aRchives Submit

 Atøm | Spanish
supportbar.jpg Bea!   Creative Commons License
This journal is licensed under a Creative Commons License and powered by Movable Typo 4.01.
Y.P.R. & Co.

The Journal of Literary Satire | Hastily Written & Slopilly Edited
Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Even More Examples of How Viswanathan’s Novel Mirrors the Works of Megan McCafferty

by Mordechai Shinefield

Invading My Personal Space

From page 213 of McCaffery’s novel:
“Marcus then leaned across me to open the passenger-side door. He was invading my personal space, as I had learned in Psych class—something with B.F. Skinner or something, and I remembered that when my space is invaded, I should kick the invader in the balls. But he was like Hitler and I was like Poland and soon there was nowhere else for me to go.”

From page 175 of Viswanathan’s novel:
“Sean stood up and stepped toward me, ostensibly to show me the book. He was definitely invading my personal space, as I had learned in a Human Evolution class last summer, and I instinctively backed up till my legs hit the chair I had been sitting in. That just made him move in closer, until the grommets in the leather embossed the backs of my knees, and he finally tilted the book toward me. ‘Look,’ he said. ‘The almost exact same words are used here.’ I tried to kick him in the balls to escape.”

Victor Fleming Might Want to Look into This One…

From page 37 of McCafferty’s novel:
“There was very little I wouldn’t do. Yes, I was driven to try anything in pursuit of the college of my dreams. It gleamed when I shut my eyes at night, the holy sanctuary of academia, where I belonged. Harvard.”

From page 17 of Viswanathan’s novel:
“I will lie, cheat, and steal, but I will go - to - Harvard!”

The Smell of Friends

From page 7 of McCafferty’s novel:
“Bridget smelled of herring, shmektaba, and molding cheese. In our youth, this was all we needed to bond over. That was until she found Dove soap and began her inevitable climb back into the good graces of society.”

From page 14 of Viswanathan’s novel:
“I was called to my agent Priscilla, like a mouse to a stack of cheese. She promised we would be friends forever, but she was like a mousetrap. As I suffered under the scrutiny of The New York Times, my compatriot in crime inevitably climbed back into the good graces of society.”

His Ironic Ways

From page 23 of McCafferty’s novel:
“He was always telling jokes that went over my head. In sarcastic flops of his hair, and ironic shines in his eyes. He’d call attention to my poor dressing habits, the way my prose fell flat on the page—like his gaze always fell onto me.”

From page 48 of Viswanathan’s novel:
“He was always throwing softballs that went over my head. In sarcastic tosses of the baseball, and ironic shines of his metallic bat. He’d call attention to my poor fielding skills, the way I dropped every line drive to shortstop—like his gaze always line-drived onto me.”

In Dealings with The Harvard Crimson

From page 217 of McCafferty’s novel:
“But then he tapped me on the shoulder, and said something so random that I was like: ‘Are you totally high?’ and he always answered, ‘There are polar bears in my nose.’”

From page 142 of Viswanathan’s novel:
“But then he tapped me for a few dollars, before saying something totally random, like, ‘I think I’ve read passages from this book before somewhere else.’ and I’d answer, ‘I have no idea what you are talking about.’”

Pressure Will Drive You to Do Funny Things

From page 527 of McCaffery’s novel:
“The pressure to get into Harvard is so great, that when I opened the thick envelope, I almost stopped breathing. The pressure dropped like a stack of books onto my head. I thought I’d faint.”

From page 517 of Viswanathan’s novel:
“Don’t people understand the pressure to succeed? God almighty, who ever heard of giving a seventeen-year-old a book contract? And my parents! Don’t even get me started on my parents. It wasn’t enough to get into Harvard, I needed to produce huge amounts of writing as well. It’s like I need to stop everything, even breathing. The pressure is like being smacked on the head with a mallet. Well—at least I’m in The New York Times.”

Mordechai Shinefield has written for The Forward, NY Press and currently blogs for Jewschool. He is working on his own novel, which is extensively cribbed from Isaac Bashevis Singer and Shalom Aleichem.