Harriet Manners is tired of being labeled a geek. So when she’s discovered by a modeling agent, she seizes the chance to reinvent herself. There’s only one problem: Harriet is the definition of awkward. Does she have what it takes to transform from geek to chic?
Geek Girl is the first book in a hilarious new trilogy. It was also the #1 bestselling YA debut of 2013 in the UK, where it was shortlisted for the Roald Dahl Funny Prize and won the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize for Best Book for Teens. With all the humor and fabulous shenanigans of Louise Rennison’s Confessions of Georgia Nicolson and Meg Cabot’s The Princess Diaries, Geek Girl is about to become an international superstar.
Best Bits: I love a good British comedy, so when I read comparisons to Louise Rennison's books I was itching to pick this up. In some ways it met my expectations, and in others it fell flat. The thing that I enjoyed most was, surprisingly, the conflict between Harriet and her best friend Nat (who wants to be a model, and is not spotted). I think it was realistic that there would be conflict between the two after Harriet gets chosen to be a model, despite having zero interest in fashion. The friendship drama was more about honesty, rather than jealousy. It was sort of refreshing to read a book where the main character is gaining maturity in a friendship, rather than dealing with a best-friend-turned-mean-girl.
I also really appreciated the family support that Harriet has throughout the book. Sure, both adults are a big misguided, but it's apparent that they care about Harriet and her happiness. This is particularly true of Annabel, Harriet's stepmother. Throughout the book we see her trying to make decisions in Harriet's best interest. This doesn't mean that she's a perfect character, as she sometimes bases her assumptions and decisions on what she believes Harriet would want, rather than asking her. I think that may be one of the overall messages of this book. Every character has their flaws, but that's acceptable. None of the characters are meant to be perfect. That's always a good message to send.
Nit Picks: At times I felt like Harriet was a middle-grade character. She is dealing with your typical teen issues (aside from being spotted and turned into a model), yet she reads more like a child. I had an internal debate about whether this was due to being overly sheltered...but it's hard for me to believe that a character can be so naive. At some points in the read it drew me out of the story.
By Holly Smale
Published by HarperTeen
Received for Review
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