Books in the Park

suggestions from the Barbara S. Ponce Public Library at Pinellas Park

Annie On My Mind, by Nancy Garden

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annie on my mindLiza Winthrop is spending a quiet afternoon at the Metropolitan Museum of Art where she wasn’t intending to make a new friend, but she does, in the form of Annie Kenyon. Annie and Liza are very different from one another, but the two become fast friends and, eventually, lovers.

This young adult novel details the story of two high school girls who discover first love and all the perils that come along with being gay in the eighties. It is a quiet story focused entirely on Annie and Liza. It sidesteps the larger issues that faced the gay community at that time in favor of showing how personal prejudices affects the lives of these two girls.

Garden intended this novel to stay relevant long after it was published. There are few cultural references, effectively making the story relateable. It was very easy to imagine this love story unfolding today. Amazingly, the only things that really date the story are the bigoted responses of characters reacting to gay people. Thankfully, many of these silly notions have been dispelled, and the idea that anyone actually thought that is laughable.

Annie on My Mind is part timeless romance, part testament to how ignorant society was in the past, and in no small part an entirely entertaining read.

Check the PPLC Catalog for Annie on My Mind.

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