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This is the book about the pedophile teacher–maybe you’ve heard of it? I was wary of reading it because of the subject matter, but enjoyed an interview I listened to with Alissa Nutting and know some friends found the book interesting. I’ve been way off on my predictions for what I’m going to like and not like lately. I thought I’d have conflicted feelings about liking a book about a woman who seduces and statutory-rapes a fourteen year old, but I actually don’t have to wrestle with those feelings because it turns out that I didn’t like the book for a few other reasons, too.

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Weirdly, I found that Tampa had a lot in common with The Woman Upstairs. Both protagonists would be absolutely horrified to find themselves compared to each other, and I could compare them, although the similarities I found were more overarching than simply the self-absorption of their narrators. Both books suffered, I thought, from a lack of “something else going on.” In Tampa, there is really nothing but the main character, Celeste’s, obsession with young teenage boys. Read the rest of this entry »