It was February 2008, a week before I will start in my new company. Nanay and I went to Marikina Riverbanks to get something I could use in my new office. In one of the far corners of the store we went to, I found the book “Saving Francesca”.
I read the summary at the back of the book, and since I am writing an almost similar plot where a girl get transferred to an all-boys school, I decided to buy to make it as my reference.
The story about Francesca Spinelli, who narrates it in her own view. She just started Year 11 in Saint Sebastian’s, which is an all-boys school that started to accept girls that school year. As a new school year starts, she had to deal with things happening in her life – new school, trying to make new friends, feeling left out since her friends went to another school, falling in love, and her mother’s depression.
What affected her and her family most is her mother’s depression. Suddenly, she found herself getting support from her new friends during these times. She is stuck in the middle – trying to be an adult and a child at the same time. Frankie is used to hearing her mother’s words of wisdom and encouragement (or butting in to her life and telling her what to do) almost everyday, and with her being like a ghost in the house, she suddenly felt lost.
Frankie had to face her world on her own. She became friends with some of the Stella girls who also goes to Saint Sebastian’s – Tara the feminist, Siobhan the flirt, and Justine the shy and quiet girl. She also found an unlikely friendship from Thomas, music lover, Jimmy the stoner, and Will, the Year 12 guy who will become her love interest in the story.
I found myself unable to put down the book the moment I read the first chapter. I have read the whole book over and over again. I love how the author depicts high school in a more real sense. While others may candy-coat high school stories, Melina Marchetta writes how high school really is. Every words and lines are unforgettable. There are linesin the story that I sometime read over and over again, especially when I feel sad. Whenever feel so down, I just go and reread this book to cheer me up.
I love how Frankie’s character developed in the story. She had no idea what she wants to do with her life yet. She is in a stage where she is finding her place and her identity. She struggles to conform with what her old friends want her to be, instead of what she really is, just to be accepted by them. In the end, she let lose and began to be herself. When before, she needed to be saved by others, her resolute at the end of the story is that it’s only her that can save herself.
At the time I was reading this, I can relate to it since there’s a big change in my life. I see myself in Frankie, uncertain of things to come. I love this book so much, but sadly, it got lost. Not sure if it got flooded, or it simply got lost during moving to our house. Still this is one of my favorite books.
And since I love quoting this book, below are my favorite lines.
“Comfort zones are overrated. They make you lazy”
“Do you think people have noticed that I’m around?”
“I notice it when you’re not. Does that count?
“I think we’re made up of all these different pieces and every time someone goes, you’re left with less of yourself.”
“Do something that scares you everyday.”
“I want to be an adjective again. But I’m a noun.
A nothing. A nobody. A no one.”
“Memory is a funny thing. It tricks you into believing that you’ve forgotten important moments, and then when you’re raking your brain for a bit of information that might make sense of something else, it taps you on the head and says, “Remember when you told me to put that memory in the green rubbish bin? Well, I didn’t, I put it in the black recycling tub, and it’s coming your way again.”
“I think I’m a bit in love with these girls. They make me feel giddy. Like I haven’t a care in the world. Like I’m fearless.
Like I used to be.”
“When I grow up, I’m going to be my mother.”
“You’re my rock.”
“I didn’t even know who I w as here, so what made me think that I’d know who I was over there?”
“You go and shake your foundations, Will. I think it’s about time I saved myself.”
~~~ Heading grabbed from hypable.com