23 August 2010

the secret life of ceecee wilkes: belle on heels' response to chapters 1-10

i know this is a week late, but i kept forgetting to go pick the book up from the library.  i picked it up on friday and had it finished by yesterday afternoon.  it really was that good!  here's my response to the first set of questions:

1. what was your first impression of tim?  too good to be true.  and 99% of the time, if something seems too good to be true, it probably is.  the thing that jumped out at me the most was the age difference.  what could a 22-year old graduate student possibly have in common with a 16-year old coffee shop waitress?  ceecee herself said she doesn't consider herself particularly attractive, so why is he going out of his way to seduce her?  and then his inability to clean up after himself?  ick! if he doesn't take care of himself, he's not going to take care of you.

2. if you were in ceecee’s position, would you be willing to help your boyfriend in the way that she is willing to help tim?  from my perspective, absolutely not.  i've always been a straight-laced, rule-follower oldest child and honestly, i wouldn't have been allowed to have a 22-year old boyfriend in the first place!  that said, ceecee was coming from a totally different place, so as terrible as it was, i can kind of see how she got swept away in everything.  at the end of the day, though, she knew that what he was planning was wrong and illegal and she went along with it anyways.  someone who truly loved you wouldn't ask that of you.

3. why do you think ceecee is so eager to please tim?  because she's young and desperate for love.  we all do stupid things when we're young and we all do things for love, but ceecee is even worse because she has been without love for so long.  she obviously has a huge heart and capacity to love, but hasn't been able to give that love to anyone since her mother died.  on the flipside, she has never had a man's love in her life.  now that she has it, she's is going to do anything she can to hold onto it.  and if i were in her shoes, i'm not sure that i could blame her.

4. who do you think has it harder? tim or ceecee?  ceecee.  don't get me wrong...they both have had a rough go of it.  but tim has been given opportunities and complicated though the relationships may be, he still has some of his family.  he also has financial security and an education.  ceecee has been given every excuse to fail and refuses to give up. 

5. what character trait(s) about ceecee stuck out the most to you in these first ten chapters? the one that stands out the most is her resilience.  she lost the only parent she knew to a horrible disease at a very young age, spent the next four years being bounced around foster homes, and barely missed out on a college scholarship, yet she seems remarkably well-adjusted and optimistic and not the slightest bit jaded or bitter.  to have experienced that much loss and lack of stability and still be so grounded and caring is very, very impressive.

6. do you think ceecee is as mature as she seems?  yes and no.  in many ways, she seems very wise beyond her years.  obviously very intelligent and she has been through more emotional trauma than many people experince in a lifetime.  she is disciplined enough to work hard, save money for college, and live basically on her own without getting into trouble.  for a 16-year old, those are all pretty unbelievable traits!  but on the other hand, her maturity in her relationship with tim is nonexistent.  she blurts out everything that comes to mind, believes that she is in love with him from day one, cleans up after him and his brother as well as cooks for them, and truly believes he wants to marry her.  a little extreme but, i mean, weren't we all immature and silly when we had our first teenage relationship?  it's certainly understandable.  but she is clearly in over her head in a relationship with someone so much older than her.  it's clear that she just doesn't grasp the depth of a lot of things.