Thursday, June 30, 2011

Mission (un)Popular

by Anna Humphrey

This is a great summer read for teenage girls.

Just days before School Year’s Eve, twelve-year-old Margot Button finds out that her best friend, Erika-with-a-K, will not be attending the same junior high school. This being the major tragedy among smaller, lesser tragedies, (no back to school shopping trip and an impromptu, disastrous DIY haircut and eyebrow tweezing) Margot’s new school year seems as if it’s shaping up to be a nightmare. But then Margot befriends Em, a new student from New York who is outspoken, daring and maybe a little bit dangerous. Soon Margot and Em are scheming against mean-girl Sarah J., ignoring Erika-with-a-K and dreaming up ways to hook Margot’s crush, Gorgeous George.

Perfect, right? Except that Em has an on-again-off-again relationship with the truth and her schemes tend to go too far…

There seems to be a lack of quality coming-of-age fiction for the middle school crowd and Mission (Un)Popular helps fill this gap. This book is one of the best portrayals of what it’s like to survive middle school that I’ve read in a very long time. Margot’s School Year Resolution is to “be more normal” and this nicely sums up the inner turmoil that many (all?) teenage girls face at one point or another.


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