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Thursday, March 1, 2012
"Freshman Year & Other Unnatural Disasters" by Meredith Zeitlin
Publisher: G.P. Putnam
Age Group: Young Adult
Kelsey Finkelstein is fourteen and FRUSTRATED. Every time she tries to live up to her awesome potential, her plans are foiled – by her impossible parents, her annoying little sister, and life in general. But with her first day of high school coming up, Kelsey is positive that things are going to change. Enlisting the help of her three best friends — sweet and quiet Em, theatrical Cass, and wild JoJo — Kelsey gets ready to rebrand herself and make the kind of mark she knows is her destiny.
Things start out great - her arch-nemesis has moved across the country, giving Kelsey the perfect opportunity to stand out on the soccer team and finally catch the eye of her long-time crush. But soon enough, an evil junior’s thirst for revenge, a mysterious photographer, and a series of other catastrophes make it clear that just because KELSEY has a plan for greatness… it doesn’t mean the rest of the world is in on it.
Oh, Kelsey...how does trouble find you so easily? Kelsey Finkelstein had big plans for her freshman year, especially after she found out her crush is now available. Unfortunately, the universe seems to have other plans in mind. Admittedly, it's been a while since I was a fourteen year old girl, but I can remember having sleepover's with my best friends and obsessing about boys and planning perfect kissing scenarios. I loved that Kelsey had a great, tight knit, group of girlfriends to get into trouble with or to talk to when dealing with a crazy situation. I don't think I can pick a favorite, because I really liked all of them, for different reasons. I also loved that they went to a halloween party dressed as female village people. That's genius!
Kelsey's troubles all start with a betrayal and a bad make-out session, then they seem to snowball. She keeps having embarassing pictures of her published in the school newspaper, an older soccer team mate is constantly tormenting her, for no apparent reason, and she doesn't seem to be having the best luck in the kissing department. Sometimes Kelsey was a little self-absorbed and didn't really notice that things were going on with her friends, but when they really needed her she always ended up coming through.
This was such a fun and funny book. Kelsey's life was so entertaining, even when it wasn't going her way, and I wouldn't mind spending a few more books with her and her friends. Also, the book ended in prom, which is probably my most favorite thing to read about. And "The Intrigue of Chess" is probably the coolest prom theme I have ever heard of! This is an excellent contemporary read, it's quick, fun and will remind you of what it was like to be starting high school and getting into mischief with your friends :0)