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Freaky Green Eyes

1 rating: 5.0
A book by Joyce Carol Oates

Franky Pierson was almost raped shortly after she turned 14. In order to help herself deal with the trauma, she created an alter ego known as "Freaky Green Eyes," a quick-thinking persona whose strength she believes helped her escape from her … see full wiki

Author: Joyce Carol Oates
Genre: True Crime, Juvenile Fiction, Family & Relationships
Publisher: Avon Tempest
Date Published: February 01, 2005
1 review about Freaky Green Eyes

There's a Freaky in all of us

  • Dec 16, 2003
Rating:
+5
Pros: Interesting plot, perfect characterization and setting description

Cons: Beginning is somewhat slow

The Bottom Line: Read Freaky Green Eyes and discover what is inside all of us.

Freaky Green Eyes by Joyce Carol Oates is a compelling title, and I had to investigate the contents of this book. The cover displays am odd picture of a small red cabin and a big tree that stands out. Weird cover, weird title, well known author... here I come.

I was a little confused. The main character, Francesca "Franky" Pierson refers, in the beginning, to Freaky Green Eyes as a person. This, of course, only made me want to know more. Freaky is in all of us. That second persona we all have that is dying to get out and sometimes manages to do so; telling off that rude cashier, or being the guts it takes to yell back at mom or dad when they're not being "fair." We've all experienced Freaky, some of us more than others, and some of us without realizing it.

Franky Pierson lives with her father, the amazingly popular Reid Pierson, local sportscaster, and her sister Samantha, and sometimes her mother Krista. Only sometimes? It seems that lately, her mother is staying at a summer cabin in Skagit Harbor more often, and when she comes home, Franky's father leaves for a work-trip. Her father seems to be making fun of her mother more often as well. What is going on?

Franky knows something is different between her father and mother, but she can't quite figure out what it is. Her father tells her and Samantha that their mother is off in her own little world, and little by little he lets them know that she doesn't want to be a part of their lives anymore. Franky finds herself resenting her mother more and more and agreeing with her father, despite his irrational mood-swings and belittling of the family. Still, deep down, Franky misses her mother, and she misses seeing her parents together.

Freaky, however, subtly shows the reader that Reid Pierson dislikes the way his wife is changing... she is developing her own personality and hobbies, and is no longer just his wife, his arm candy. Freaky also sees that something is wrong when a Samantha and Franky's visit with their mother in Skagit Harbor is cut short because their father comes home. What is taking so long when Reid takes his wife in the house to talk?

Franky believes her father when he says that their mother has a new "lover." She believes him when he says he has no idea why their mother has all of a sudden disappeared. With the media at their doorstep, the Pierson family, minus Krista, must deal with the accusations that Reid Pierson knows where his wife and "lover" have gone.

Freaky finally is able to open Franky's eyes to the truth, and the truth is not easy.

Joyce Carol Oates has written a novel that draws you in; I felt like I was Franky, and I found myself afraid of Reid Pierson and mad at Krista Pierson, just as she was. I like the personification of Freaky Green Eyes, and the characterization of Freaky, as well as Franky, and Samantha, Krista and Reid, and Franky's half-brother Todd. Reid personality especially jumps out at you; it is easy to see how his charisma can win anyone over. Anyone. I flew through this 341 page book.

It's characters like Freaky/Franky that illustrate the possibility that trauma can trigger multiple personalities; a theory that is somewhat controversial. However, whether that alter-ego becomes a separate personality (or one of "multiple personalities") or just another part of one's self, it's my epinion that we all have one to some degree. Some, like Freaky, just happen to help us overcome the dangers and traumas in our lives.

I loved the writing style of this book, as well as the plot, the characterization, and the thoughtfulness the story provoked in myself. The only thing I disliked was the slight repetitiveness in the beginning; I enjoyed parts two and three much better than the first.

**This review was written for sleeper54's Lean-n-Mean-Two write-off, where you keep your review less than 666 words. Get moving, and join in! (Check it out here!)

View my other Lean, Mean reviews:
Bravery in a Bottle
My Stars! Another great "Wood" book
Where Everyone is Sleeping
Simply Fabulous, Dahhling
Netflix= Convenience, fun, ease


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