Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Gayle Forman's New Novel, Just One Day, has a Character Named Lulu

Gayle Forman's new novel, Just One Day (Dutton Juvenile), has been getting a lot of attention lately. It's a teen romance described as a journey toward self-discovery and true love. 

"When sheltered American good girl Allyson Lulu Healey first meets laid-back Dutch actor Willem De Ruiter at an underground performance of Twelfth Night in England, there’s an undeniable spark. After just one day together, that spark bursts into a flame, or so it seems to Allyson, until the following morning, when she wakes up after a whirlwind day in Paris to discover that Willem has left. Over the next year, Allyson embarks on a journey to come to terms with the narrow confines of her life, and through Shakespeare, travel, and a quest for her almost-true-love, to break free of those confines."

MTV's Hollywood Crush website calls Just One Day "Part romance, part travelogue, part coming-of-age tale" and notes that  Lulu is the name Willem bestows upon Allyson thanks to her likeness to Louise Brooks.Similarly, the New York Times noted "He calls her Lulu, the nickname of the silent film actress Louise Brooks, and neither asks her real name nor discloses much about himself." 

I haven't read the book, but would be curious to hear from anyone who has if there are any other allusions or references to Louise Brooks. For more on the actress and her influence on 20th century literature, see my Huffington Post article, "Louise Brooks - Cover Girl and Secret Muse of the 20th Century."

More about Gayle Forman can be found on her website at

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