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Love and Haight by Susan Carlton

Love and Haight

by Susan Carlton

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Chloe is seventeen and pregnant- even though she used protection the one and only time she had sex. It’s 1971 and Roe v Wade is still two years in the future, and abortion is only legal in California and New York. Chloe lives in Arizona. Lucky for her, she has an aunt who lives in San Francisco and a friend willing to take a road trip with her over winter break. So Chloe and MJ find themselves in ‘Frisco with no real idea where aunt Kiki lives, unable to get hold of her by phone, and it’s getting late. That pretty much sets the tone for the rest of the trip- nothing goes easily or as planned. Abortion may be legal, but there are still hoops to jump through to obtain one, especially for someone under 18. Add to this Chloe’s occasional doubts about her proposed action, her feelings about her previous relationship with MJ’s brother, and the fact that Kiki is a stoner performance artist and you’ve got it.

The book is very short, and I think because of this the characters aren’t developed very well. MJ seems to serve as chauffer and conscience; Kiki is the cool adult; Chloe’s mother is the feminist. MJ’s brother, Teddy, is the good guy Chloe should have waited for- the perfect, understanding guy. Even Chloe’s portrayal seems rather surface, which is odd, given that the book is from her POV. But the author does get the feel of the time and place well. The characters all fit that time and place, even if they aren’t deep. I knew people like Kiki and Chloe’s mother! It’s a very quick read, and while not great, it’s not bad, either, and would serve as a good book for a young teen to introduce them to the issue of abortion.

I do have to say that it was alarming to find an era I lived through listed as ‘historical fiction’! ( )
  lauriebrown54 | Sep 13, 2013 |
I love historical fiction! Okay, the seventies was not that long ago, but that decade is completely different from now (or any other time really). While the story didn't completely grab me, the setting sure did.

Chloe is seventeen and pregnant. More specifically, Chloe is seventeen and pregnant and does not plan to be for much longer. She travels to San Francisco with her best friend to get an abortion where it is legal (although there are a few hoops to jump through). While there though, things are not as quick and snappy as she had hoped. She gets wrapped up in a summer romance that wasn't quite as over as she thought, a best friend who is trying to be supportive but does not approve, and a wacky free-love type hippy aunt.

This was one of those books where I felt like a was reading a story. I know, that sounds like "well.... duh." But what I mean is, it was so short that I didn't have time to really connect to the characters, whiteness development or care about what was going to happen. I was reading a story rather than being in the story, or completely immersed. I wanted to see what was going to happen next, I just wasn't effected either way. With a book so short, it is hard to not turn out like that. That being said, that is not really a criticism, that is just a statement.

I really liked "witnessing" the seventies. Spoiler Alert (not really) I was not alive during the seventies. It is interesting to read about a time that was not that long ago, but still completely different from anything I've witnessed. Like I said, I love historical fiction, however; a lot of times it seems rather fake. The flower-power setting of Love and Haight seemed highly realistic and was definitely entertaining. ( )
  ilikethesebooks | May 4, 2012 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 080508097X, Hardcover)

It’s 1971, and seventeen-year-old Chloe and her best friend MJ head to San Francisco to ring in the New Year. But Chloe has an ulterior motive—and a secret. She’s pregnant and has devised a plan not to be. In San Francisco’s flower-power heyday, it was (just about) legal to end her pregnancy.
But as soon as the girls cross the Golden Gate, the scheme starts to unravel amid the bellbottoms, love-beads, and bongs. Chloe’s secrets escalate until she betrays everyone she cares about. MJ, who has grave doubts about Chloe’s plan. Her groovy aunt Kiki, who’s offered the girls a place to crash. Her self-absorbed mother meditating back in Phoenix. And maybe, especially, the boy she wishes she’d waited for.
In Susan Carlton's Love and Haight, Chloe discovers that easy love is anything but easy.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:07:12 -0400)

Seventeen-year-old Chloe brings her friend MJ to San Francisco, one of the few places where an abortion can be obtained legally in 1971, to get rid of Chloe's "Thing" while staying with her bohemian Aunt Kiki, experiencing hippie culture, and reconnecting with a former boyfriend.… (more)

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