Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Book Review: Sloppy Firsts by Megan McCafferty

Megan and I like to make sure we review the latest and greatest teen books for you, however every now and then we rediscover an older title that we think you might enjoy. Sloppy Firsts might have been published over 10 years ago, but the books is as good as I remember it being back then!

Meet Jessica (not-so) Darling. In the middle of her sophomore year in high school her best friend Hope moves away from Pineville, New Jersey to Tennessee. This event is going to ruin her life. Of course, they will keep in touch but it's not like having Hope in Pineville. Jessica's perfect sister is planning a wedding (in June) that is taking up most of her mom's life, and her father is more interested in her status as a track star than any of her other interests. It's as if the world wants to show her how lame Pineville really can be.

Her journal serves a place where she can record the things that happen to her, her so called "friends" and other observations on life in a small suburban town. Of course, this all changes when Marcus Flutie crashes into her life. A friend of Hope's brother (who recently died of a heroin overdose), Jessica wants nothing to do with him, however he keeps appearing. First there is the fact that he is always in her homeroom, typically sitting behind her, but mostly it's the fact that he can get under her skin by saying one or two things.

Of course, Marcus goes unnoticed by most of Jessica's friends, Bridget, Manda and Sarah also known as "the clueless crew" mainly because they are not Hope, but also because each is a bit one dimensional. New girl Hy adds some drama to the mix, and Jessica is never one to keep back a biting comment, even if it is just in her journal.

Reading Sloppy Firsts is like reading the journal of your best friend. Jessica holds nothing back as she honestly tells about her family, friends and what is going on in her world. The book takes place from January 1st 2000- January 1st 2001, and a lot has changed in the world, however things like being true to yourself, and having good friends and family really haven't.

Fans of authors like Sarah Dessen, E. Lockhart and series like Louise Rennison's Georgia Nicolson books or the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants books will enjoy the honest look at high school that author Megan McCafferty gives us. The best part is that the books follow Jessica and her life past high school to college and beyond. (Just a quick note, as the characters grow up, so do their situations. The first two books are found in the YA collection, while the last three are in the Adult Fiction collection.)

I'll see you @ the library!
Katie (Reading Thumped, Megan McCafferty's follow up to Bumped- can you tell I'm on a favorite author kick?)