|AUTHOR: Cathleen Daly |
PUBLISHER: Roaring Brook Press
PUBLICATION DATE: Jan. 4, 2011
SOURCE: Region XI Book Review Committee
GENRE: Chick Lit; Humor
OVERALL RATING: Recommended
RECOMMENDED FOR: MS
SUMMARY: In an effort to gain the attention of the boys they like, two friends establish Flirt Club, a group that meets weekly to study, discuss, and practice the fine art of flirting. Through notes, lists, and diary entries, best friends Izzy and Annie share the silliness, flirtations, new friendships, and heartache of their eighth grade year.
WHY I CHOSE IT: This one is for Book Review Committee, but I selected it over others because of the journal/letters/lists format. I'm always looking for new books to recommend to my TTYL-obsessed middle school girls.
WHAT I LIKED: This story is mainly about the strong bonds between friends. I really like how when best friends Annie and Izzy both like the same boy, the girls never argue over the boy; they support each other and put their friendship first. I also like how silly, innocent, creative, and smart the girls are; they are quite refreshing considering some of their counterparts from other contemporary YA chick-lit books. Some of the flirting advice ("If a guy looks at you, try to look back instead of immediately looking away" p. 73) is actually pretty practical (and not overtly sexual) for middle school girls. Ditto with the advice on "how to recognize a player."
While the girls do talk about boys a LOT, they do have other friends and things going on in their lives (such as the school play). They talk about a wide variety of boys, too, which is realistic and healthy for eighth grade girls. When one of the girls reluctantly breaks up with her first boyfriend, her friends come to the rescue with some hilarious locker antics that made me laugh out loud. Through all their ups and downs, the girls stay true to themselves and each other, setting a shining example for today's middle school girls.
WHAT I DIDN'T LIKE: Daly really knows her audience. While this is certainly a good thing, it also limits the appeal of Flirt Club to a very specific audience of middle school girls who like reading chick lit. As an adult reader, I had to read parts of this one in small chunks because the girls' silliness and long discussions about the minutia of life as an eighth grade girl got tedious at times. While it may not be for everyone, Flirt Club’s cutesy charm is perfect for tween girls.
FAVORITE QUOTES:"It seems like maybe the popular people drink [beer] so they can loosen up and act as free as the drama people do all the time" (p. 163).
"You can take the girl out of the drama geek lunch table, but you can't take the drama geek out of the girl!" (p. 239)
- LANGUAGE--very mild; slightly vulgar locker-room talk of bitches, boobs, poo, farts, etc.
- SEXUALITY--mild; some talk of kissing and sex; one girl gets "felt up"
- DRUGS/ ALCOHOL--teen party with beer
STATUS IN MY LIBRARY: We have it, and it does see some checkout. One eighth grade girl reviewed it for me, and she Highly Recommended it. She really liked it.