This book is very mall-goth. Oppressively so. In case there’s the slightest possibility you can’t see it coming, Amelia Atwater Rhodes opens it with (cringe) a poem by Edgar Allen Poe:
From childhood’s hour I have not been
As others were — I have not seen
As others saw — I could not bring
My passions from a common spring—
From the same source I have not taken
My sorrow—I could not awaken
My heart to joy at the same tone —
And all I lov’d—I lov’d alone —
Then — in my childhood — in the dawn
Of a most stormy life—was drawn
From ev’ry depth of good and ill
The mystery which binds me still—
From the torrent, or the fountain—
From the red cliff of the mountain —
From the sun that round me roll’d
In its autumn tint of gold —
From the lighting of the sky
As it pass’d me flying by—
From the thunder, and the storm —
And the cloud that took the form
(When the rest of Heaven was blue)
Of a demon in my view —
Now, this is a truly lovely poem about a man who had a very sad tumultuous life, and who was outlining that he was entranced by things that were different from others, and failed to be interested in what other people were. Honestly, I don’t think anyone who’s actually read Poe (NOT THE FRICKING “Raven”!) can disagree.
Nothing wrong with that… until you read a bit further and realize that it’s meant to be a expression of the author/Sue’s emo speshulness and how Nobody Understands Her and she’s So Deep And Dark.
THE NIGHT IS FULL OF MYSTERY. Even when the moon is brightest, secrets hide everywhere.
…. because of course there are no mysteries or secrets in the daytime. Only at night… and that’s because it’s cooler!
Then the sun rises and its rays cast so many shadows that the day creates more illusion than all the veiled truth of the night.
Okay, now I’m confused. First the night was all secrets and mysteries, and now it has “the veiled truth.” The day has suddenly become all about deception… instead of the night… oh forget it. My brain hurts already.
I have lived in this illusion for much of my life, but I have never belonged to it.
Yup, here we have another classic Sue characteristic – waaaaaa, she doesn’t BELONG to the normal mundane world. It’s sooooo not her. She’s above such things.
Before my birth, I existed for too long in the realm between nothingness and life,
INSERT EPIC FORESHADOW HERE.
and even now, the night still whispers to me. A strong cord binds me to the dark side of the world, and shields me from the light.
In case you have not figured it out: Emo Teen Sue is Emo, and probably has a pentagram tattoo, no personal traumas whatsoever, an all-black wardrobe, no friends, and thinks that wearing eyeliner is a sign of depth and emotional maturity.