In further Anne Frank fanfic news, Roger Sutton, editor of the Horn Book (a schmancy journal of children’s literature) officially confirms that Anne and Peter do not have sex in Annexed, the forthcoming YA novel by Sharon Dogar based on The Diary of Anne Frank as retold from Peter’s point of view. Â (Hoo boy, that SENTENCE deserves to be annexed, AMIRITE??) Sutton loved the novel; he’s clearly an opinionated guy. And he’s furious at the Jezzies for their post implying that Anne and Peter do the attic nasty in Annexed. But the Jezzies were only responding to what Annexed’s publisher (perhaps moronically) said: Dogar felt that Anne and Peter did do the deed, but that Otto Frank expurgated it from the diary.Â As I said in my last post on this topic, I do believe in reading something before you attack it, but it seems to me that there are legit reasons to expect to be squicked by this book. And if it turns out to be brilliant, siman tov u’mazel tov. I gotta do a roundup of the best Jewish children’s books every year, and it sucks to have to grade on a curve. If this one is great, I only have to find 9 more! Because it’s all about me and my column needs!
I’m also interested in what Sutton’s clearly well-read commenters have to say. One posted that she’d read Dogar’s debut novel and it was fantabulous — that sounds promising. But Meg Rosoff, a writer I trust (haven’t read her well-regarded YA novels, but we have her little-kid book Meet Wild Boars and it is funny and pointed as a sharp funny stick), had a great piece in the Guardian about the controversy. She defended Dogar’s right to use real people as grist but gently said the book itself (which she’d been asked to blurb) was not to her taste; she couldn’t finish it. She subtly compared it to The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, which I found absolutely puke-inducingly godawful and irresponsible, so uh, that.