The Vinyl Princess by Yvonne Prinz
The Vinyl Princess is a sixteen-year-old who works in a record store downtown. She loves vinyl and wants to share that with the world. To that end, she starts a blog and a zine, both of which become quite popular.
Along the way, she gets interested in a guy she starts to see around town and creates a backstory about him. She nicknames him M and ponders the nature of physical attraction.
“Could having a type be involuntary? Do we find ourselves drawn to certain physical traits in the opposite sex for no apparent reason? Things like height, skin color, hair color, eye color, breast size, bone structure? Is that all planted in our psyches when we’re children or even in the womb, so that we spend our lives searching for someone we’ve been picturing in the back of our minds forever?”
When she finally meets him, she starts to miss some of the mystery.
“I’m glad that I know Joel now, but I’d become used to the fabricated story I’d created and I suppose I was a bit in love with it. Joel, the real M, is quite a different person, harder to figure out; even with all the great stories, you get the feeling he’s leaving something out, something big. He has this unexplainable thing that I am incredibly drawn to, this daring, reckless, spontaneous side.”
I can understand wanting mystery. It’s one of the reasons that the main character doesn’t use a photo of herself for her avatar on the blog. I did the exact same thing when I started blogging. It’s one of the reasons that this book, written in 2010, feels such a part of it’s time. It’s amazing to see how this level of anonymity is no longer the norm. Just ten years ago, so many bloggers and people engaging in social media used logos or cartoon avatars.
I read differently now and that kind of spoiled this book for me. Knowing that every detail in a story is supposed to be important, there were a few things that lead me to jump to a conclusion about halfway through. I scribbled in the margins ten pages before it was revealed as well. When it came to light, I underlined that portion with the word “Yep.”
I did like the way the blogger shared her love of specific albums and how they weren’t the new pop tunes either. She really knows her stuff and has good taste in music. She has a knowledge about the world and asks great questions too.
Overall, it’s not a terrible book. But I have to admit that I didn’t enjoy it as much as I thought I would. My wife found this one for me because she knows how much I love records, DJing, and YA books. Too bad, the combination of all three wasn’t as magical as it could have been. I won’t spoil the book for you with all of the reasons why I thought so though.
My List of 2020 Reads – my annual reading b(log)