Girl Parts Book Review

Girl Parts by John Cusick

In the middle of the night, 750 teens sign-on to their computers to watch a girl commit suicide. David is one and despite the horrific act, he is completely unfazed. The adults in his life are shocked by his apathy and using new technology they decide to treat his disassociative disorder through the use of Rose, an attractive girl robot designed to reconnect David with the world through a rewards and punishment system. With her help, they all hope David will learn to love and feel. Charlie lives across the lake from David and although he cares, he has no idea how to show it and lives the life of a loner, hoping somehow to connect with the world. David however sees Rose as nothing more than a sex doll, a fact that presents a problem for Rose was created with no "girl parts", and the minute he becomes aware of this flaw he tosses her away. Together Rose and Charlie stumble into the world and discover what it means to be connected and how a girl can be more than the sum of her parts.

There are a lot of different layers to this book. The obvious one being that technology is detaching our young people from the world, that things like on-line suicides are so blase that not a single person reported it. Worse yet, although some other kids may have been bothered by it, David doesn't care. Rose, is nothing more than another computer and all he cares about it winning the game, whatever the game is. The minute it is clear that he can't win with his usual tactics, he gives up.

But there is more to it than that. There is the fact that Charlie is the antithesis of David for he is disconnected from the world completely and desperately wants to connect. He needs someone like Rose to show him how human a girl can be.

Or that David never really changes. He never gets it. He sees girls as nothing more than sex toys and Rose is no different. How terrible for the girl, but in the end you feel really bad for him. Even after sex, there is no happiness, only emptiness. He will forever be lonely and sad, searching for that human connection that he will never find because he doesn't know how to connect to other human beings.

There were a few moments where I got lost on who was telling the story as it sometimes happened mid chapter, but the characters were different enough that I was able to make the switch rather quickly.

Girl Parts is a clean, crisp, story full of truth and honesty in a way that guys can really connect with. Cusick grasps the complexities of his characters, human and non, and brings humor to serious subjects like depression and sex. Although the ending was kind of open, I understood it for in the end we need to see how Rose changed Charlie and David as much as they helped change her. Sometimes we don't realize the change that has happened until the person who initiated the change has gone.


Anonymous said...

so Rose bein taken away....i get that but is she still alive or not, and there a second book to this series?