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I'm Not Your Manic Pixie Dream Girl

On-Sale Date: October 18 2016
Format: Hardcover, 352pp
ISBN# 9780062409119
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Price: $17.99


From acclaimed author Gretchen McNeil comes her first realistic contemporary romance—perfect for fans of Kody Keplinger’s The Duff and Morgan Matson’s Since You've Been Gone.

Beatrice Maria Estrella Giovannini has life all figured out. She's starting senior year at the top of her class, she’s a shoo-in for a scholarship to M.I.T., and she’s got a new boyfriend she’s crazy about. The only problem: All through high school Bea and her best friends Spencer and Gabe have been the targets of horrific bullying.

So Bea uses her math skills to come up with The Formula, a 100% mathematically guaranteed path to social happiness in high school. Now Gabe is on his way to becoming Student Body President, and Spencer is finally getting his art noticed. But when her boyfriend Jesse dumps her for Toile, the quirky new girl at school, Bea realizes it's time to use The Formula for herself. She'll be reinvented as the eccentric and lovable Trixie—a quintessential manic pixie dream girl—in order to win Jesse back and beat new-girl Toile at her own game.

Unfortunately, being a manic pixie dream girl isn't all it's cracked up to be, and “Trixie” is causing unexpected consequences for her friends. As The Formula begins to break down, can Bea find a way to reclaim her true identity and fix everything she's messed up? Or will the casualties of her manic pixie experiment go far deeper than she could possibly imagine?

A brilliant book: well written, entertaining, and unique. This book is like eating a perfect apple pie; delicious. And no, just in case you were wondering, I did NOT actually eat the book; it's called a metaphor, and as you can see, I'm still working on them. Anyways, this book is wonderful, and it would be a shame if you did not read it.


Although no stranger to the YA genre, I’M NOT YOUR MANIC PIXIE DREAM GIRL is Gretchen McNeil’s first endeavor into the world of YA Contemporary fiction and she absolutely KILLS IT! What makes this book so brilliant is the way in which she deconstructs the teenage rom-com formula, pokes fun at it, yet still manages to completely embody everything we love about the genre. McNeil fearlessly explores a variety of issues with grace and humor: sexism, feminism, stereotypes, etc. She takes an extremely sexist trope and calls it on it’s B.S., all with a smile and a wink.

The plot isn’t anything we haven’t heard before: Girl meets boy. They start dating over the summer. Boy meets charming New Girl (yes, that’s a reference) first day back at school and dumps nerdy girl. Nerdy girl changes herself (and uses best friends) to win boy back. Best guy friend (swoon) has silently been waiting in the wings all along... etc. etc. You see where it’s going... However “predictable” this plot may be, McNeil’s delivery is fresh and exciting.

Bea (or “Trixie”) is a protagonist worth rooting for. She’s smart and strong, but she’s still relatable. No teenage girl is immune to the pitfalls of high school: wanting to fit in (be popular) or wanting to be loved (have a boyfriend). McNeil intelligently spells it out for us: Bea’s journey could have been a shallow one: only in pursuit of a boy (that’s the Manic Pixie Dream Girl). But instead she embarks on a journey of self-discovery about who she is, who she wants to be, and what the various relationships in her life (family & friends) mean to her.

Charming, romantic, and hysterically funny; I’M NOT YOUR MANIC PIXIE DREAM GIRL is perfectly executed—the kind of book that should be taught. Also, this book NEEDS to be made into a movie. Say hello to my favorite new favorite YA Contemporary! Unputdownable—a MUST READ!

Note: I received a FREE ARC (advanced reader copy) from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.


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