Friday Fiction – David & Della

David and Della cover

David & Della

I don’t think I need to say much about this book.

But I will.

That cover! What the heck is up with that cover?? Is that a bottle of booze she’s holding? Klassy.

The best part, though, is the line from Horn Book Magazine at the bottom of the cover that says, “Reads like greased lightning.” That oughta reel ’em in!

The story is that David is a teenage playwright. He has a bit of writers block since an incident with this girlfriend. Then comes Della, an eccentric writing coach who helps him out. She inspires him; becomes his muse, but the more he writes, the more he learns about Della – and the more shocking it all becomes.

Aaaand we’re back to that cover. I’m sorry, but people do judge books by their covers. It might be outrageous enough for teens to pick it up and laugh at it. Like anything – if it circulates in your community and you have space for it, by all means keep it. We’re updating around here.



David and Della back cover



  1. And just in case potential buyers missed it, they repeat that quote on the back cover.

    I can just imagine the meeting where that went down.

    “Use the quote again! You can’t stress too much how this book reads like greased lightning!”

  2. This is a great site. Unfortunately I don’t run into many library books, and the ones I do are good books. But I will be on the lookout for something to contribute.

    David and Della is outrageous. Mainly because it is about teenagers. But the author wrote lots of books, so maybe it is just the cover that is bad?

  3. The laudatory comment caught me more than anything else. How does something even “read like greased lightning”?!

  4. Maybe it IS just the cover art. Zindel is a Pulitzer-prize winning author, so I can’t imagine that the books was all that awful. Then again, maybe he just needed some cash.

  5. Della is a mermaid? One would think that would be worthy of mention. But the fact that her hair exploded could take precedence…nobody paid attention, I guess.

  6. The book kind of lost me after the line, “…his ex-girlfriend tried to skewer herself on the school flagpole.” Yeesh.

    1. Isn’t it also nice how his girlfirend almost killing herself is all about him? “Goddammit woman, what did you do? Now that you tried to commit suicide I can’t write anymore! Apparently, that’s my biggest problem besides the fact that my girlfriend was so miserable she tried to kill herself! Now where to find a woman I can exploit to get my happiness back? Ah, there she is coming, the manic pixie dream girl!”

  7. That cover is awful in so many ways. Its making my eyes hurt just looking at it. I remember reading another Paul Zindel book when I was around 13 called, “Pardon me, you’re stepping on my eyeball.” An awful title but I remember thinking it was a good read at the time. Maybe I should re-read it now and see what the 38 year old me thinks…

  8. How does a person skewer themself on a school flagpole? And why did she pick that method of suicide? Or were those questions left unanswered?

  9. I remember seeing this at the library when I was a kid (I’m almost 30). I still like the cover! And the summary actually makes me want to read it.


Comments are closed.