Form and Content
We Interrupt This Semester for an Important Bulletin is a tightly plotted high school novel that takes a humorous yet sensitive look at the joys, heartaches, and confusions of teenagers trying to understand both themselves and their relationships. The setting is a generic suburban high school in an unspecified city. Ellen Conford makes no attempt to present hard-hitting social realism, but she does deal with a wide range of concerns facing most young people as they enter the world of high school.
As Carrie Wasserman, the narrator, begins her sophomore year at Lincoln High School, everything seems perfect. She is the features editor for the Lincoln Log and is dating Chip Custer, a senior and editor-in-chief of the newspaper. In the first chapter, Conford subtly introduces two important conflicts. When the new faculty adviser shows up, Carrie is attracted by his good looks, feeling “all melty” inside, which causes her to feel confused and a bit guilty because she has a boyfriend. Another conflict involves the seriousness with which Chip takes his job as editor. These two issues are developed over the next few chapters. Carrie interviews the “incredibly gorgeous” new biology teacher and again is confused by the attraction that she feels. When she turns in her story, Chip, as editor, tells her bluntly that it is inadequate and cannot be printed. Her second interview is better, but Chip again edits it mercilessly, and Carrie is left...
(The entire section is 519 words.)