Frankie Landau-Banks is student at an elite private school; she is interested in cute boys and boring classes until she starts dating senior Matthew, the Cutest Of Them All. It is not very long until Matthew starts acting weird. Being a brilliant badass, she discovers almost immediately that he’s part of the all-male secret society her dad was also a member of. Her new mission: defeat the patriarchy and have a great time in the process. Oh, and also show her boyfriend that treating girls like cute objects is not cool.
In a time when most YA involves supernatural creatures or terrifying dystopias, it is so easy to fall in love with a book in which a normal teenager has an awesome adventure set in our world. Everything that happens is completely plausible, even the most spectacular pranks that take place in Alabaster.
Frankie has the problems of the average teenager. She is pissed off because her boyfriend ignores her, giving more attention to his best friend Alpha and The Loyal Order of the Basset Hounds than he does to her. She is is pretty annoyed about “how Matthew had called her a “pretty package,” how he’d called her mind little, how he’d told her not to change—as if he had some power over her.” Does she mope about it? A little, but she then sets out to overthrow the old-fashioned values of her boarding school and turns into a criminal mastermind to prove to him that, really, he has nothing on her.
A clever and witty lady protagonist, who gives her entire school hell, while also teaching a lesson about girl power, is the best thing that could happen to anyone from 12 up. Be careful, teenagers I know: this book will be thrown your way very soon.
Side note: I was incredibly annoyed with myself when I discovered that both author and protagonist were female. They are ladies, and they are AWESOME.