Geek Girl by Holly Smale

I received a free copy of Geek Girl by Holly Smale for review from the publisher.  As always my reviews are my thoughts and opinions and are not influenced by the fact I was asked to write them. They are however an attempt to be fair.

“My name is Harriet Manners, and I am a geek.”

Harriet Manners knows that a cat has 32 muscles in each ear, a “jiffy” lasts 1/100th of a second, and the average person laughs 15 times per day. She knows that bats always turn left when exiting a cave and that peanuts are one of the ingredients of dynamite.

But she doesn’t know why nobody at school seems to like her.

So when Harriet is spotted by a top model agent, she grabs the chance to reinvent herself. Even if it means stealing her best friend’s dream, incurring the wrath of her arch enemy Alexa, and repeatedly humiliating herself in front of impossibly handsome model Nick. Even if it means lying to the people she loves.

Veering from one couture disaster to the next with the help of her overly enthusiastic father and her uber-geeky stalker, Toby, Harriet begins to realise that the world of fashion doesn’t seem to like her any more than the real world did.

As her old life starts to fall apart, will Harriet be able to transform herself before she ruins everything?

This book is YA.  I seem to be on something of a YA kick at the moment for no particularly reason other than this is how it’s working out.  YA has always been a “now and again” genre for me but this year it’s a bit more of one of my staples. I’m enjoying that.

I’d heard a lot of very good things about Geek Girl; there seems to be a lot of buzz about it on twitter and in book blogging circles.  It definitely lived up to it’s hype.

I loved Harriet and I loved both of her parents too.  I’m proud to be a bit of a geek myself (although I am definitely not at Harriet’s level – I’m good at random facts and interested in strange things but not like she is!) and I could see a lot of myself when I was younger in her. To start with her crazy Dad was where it was at for me and Annabel her stepmum was the clueless one who was boring. But then her true colours came to light as the book progressed and I came to love her too, probably more than Harriet’s dad.

I could relate a lot with Harriet’s desire to change herself and become something she’s not. Even now at 31 I have times when I feel like I’m not good enough and need to be more.  Thankfully I’ve gotten to the point where that doesn’t happen often any more and I’ve learnt that if others don’t like me that’s their problem not mine..  For a while in the book I was beginning to think I’d come away disappointed with the message in the book but it proved me wrong and although Harriet’s true to life journey is painful at times alls well that ends well as they said.

This is one of those books I feel like I can’t recommend highly enough.  If I was to describe my thoughts as I finished the book in just three words it would be these three: “I Want More.”  And luckily for me rumour has it Holly Smale is already at work on the sequel.

edit: 20th September 2013. The hoped for sequel is coming out later this week. Click here to read my review of Model Misfit by Holly Smale

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