Grade: Low A
Payton Gritas needs a focus object--something to focus her emotions on after discovering her father's been hiding multiple sclerosis. Her guidance counselor suggested something inanimate but Payton chooses the thing she stares at during class: Sean Griswold's head. They've been linked since third grade (Griswold-Gritas, it's an alphabetical order thing) but she's never really noticed him before.
Payton starts stalking--er, focusing on--Sean's big blond head, and her research quickly grows into something a little less scientific and a lot more crush-like. As Payton gets inside Sean's head, Sean finds a way into her guarded heart. But obsessing over Sean won't fix Payton's fear of her dad's illness. For that, she'll have to focus on herself.
Character Development: 7/10
Overall Enjoyment: 7/10
Total Score: 56/70
Obtained: Free ARC provided by publisher (Bloomsbury) for blog tour! :)
Age Appropriate? PG
Cursing: Limited, if any.
Alcohol, Drugs, etc: Mild and vague references to drug use
Sexual Content: None.
Disturbing Images/Violence: None.
A charming book, Sean Griswold's Head is definitely a new approach to the old topic of high school love. Leavitt captures flawlessly the agony, ugliness, and ultimately sweetness behind high school/middle school crushes. That this relationship develops into something real only adds to the satisfying element of the novel.
However, Payton was extremely immature. I liked her quite a bit most of the time, but it was hard to sympathize with her as she overreacted (like many teenagers do...) to the smallest things. Granted, she was dealing with the enormity of MS in her family, and this element was a great plot device as well as a push for Payton to grow up. Tough as it was to like her, I was eventually very happy to see her mature and discover herself, as well as those that loved her. The ending is satisfying, sweet, and touching on many levels.
Though not remarkable, Sean Griswold's Head was very honest and multi-dimensional--cute where appropriate, serious when necessary, and often humorous and tender. A worthy read.
Lindey Leavitt - Blog