Friday, 25 January 2013

Geek Girl

Geek Girl by Holly Smale
Hardback, 378 pages

Expected Publication: 28th February 2013 by HarperCollins Children's Books

My shelves: arc-or-review, books-i-own, contemporary, cover-appeal, read-in-2013, realistic-fiction, title-appeal, read, young-adult

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Description via Goodreads:

Harriet Manners knows a lot of things. She 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. What she isn't quite so sure about is why nobody at school seems to like her very much. So when she's spotted by a top model agent, Harriet 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 the impossibly handsome supermodel Nick. Even if it means lying to the people she loves. 

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

And as her old life starts to fall apart, the question is: will Harriet be able to transform herself before she ruins everything?

As a self confessed geek, when I heard about the release of Geek Girl, I just had to read it - I didn't even know what it was about, but the title was enough to capture my attention! As this is Holly Smale's debut novel, I really didn't know what to expect, but thankfully the contents lived up to the bright, fun book cover.

Harriet Manners, our protagonist, is a 15 year old girl who is labelled as a geek by most of the people at her school. Harriet's best friend is Nat, a girl who has wanted to be a model her whole life - something that Harriet can't quite fathom, something that she would never think of aspiring to. However, when Nat drags Harriet along to The Clothes Show, everything goes quite unexpectedly and Harriet is 'spotted' by Wilbur who works for a top modelling agent and things completely change for her.

When Harriet is spotted by a model agency, she has a lot of decisions to make, though the question of whether she really wants to model is pretty much taken out of her hands when she discovers that she has a large bill to pay due to a clumsy mistake and when she discovers Wilbur won't take no for an answer! When Harriet's father finds out about the opportunity, he highly encourages it whereas her stepmother, Annabel is against the idea. Harriet herself is bewildered by the situation - something she didn't expect and something that was meant to happen for her best friend. Harriet comes across a few problems in this novel and it's interesting (and often quite funny!) to see how she works through them. Harriet does decide to model and along with her father, she sneaks off to Russia for the job, trying as hard as she can to try and hide everything from Annabel (which turns out to be very difficult when she gets half of her hair cut off!). The whole escapade is ridiculous, which makes it so much fun. It's 

Harriet is a very likeable character and very easy to read about. She seemed to be a relatable character and someone I could empathise with. I liked seeing how she handled a job that she really didn't have much a clue about - she became very endearing as she figured things out. I really enjoyed reading about her friendship with Nat and how things changed with her decision. The relationships in this book were all typical teenage relationships and seemed realistic enough. Harriet's relationship with her 'stalker', Toby, was really great - it added such a good amount of humour to the story and I found myself both cringing and laughing at their interaction. For those who like a little bit of romance, you wont miss out - look no further than loveable Lion Boy, Nick.

It's pretty predictable what will happen in this book and the characters are quite stereotypical, but that doesn't matter - it's still enjoyable and will entertain most young adult fans, particularly young teens and those who are looking for a light read and a good giggle! Holly Smale is a very promising and gifted writer who I will look forward to seeing more from in the future.


  1. This is one of my favourites for a while - I really liked the Harriet and Toby relationship, as well! Very impressed that HS pulled that off without Toby seeming super-creepy.

  2. Sounds like a fun read! Great review! Might add this to my TBR books!

  3. Sounds like a fun read. I passed on this one as soon as I heard the word, model. I wasn't sure it would be my thing. I like the idea of a Geek Girl because it's directly my thing, but I wasn't sure whether I'd like the novel.

    I'm glad you managed to enjoy it, but I'm still not sure whether I'll read it. Great review! :)

  4. This sounds like fun. While I love the title (there is something about geeks :D) I'm not sure if this is something for me. Great review!


  5. Its awesome that you were still able to enjoy it despite it being predictable!! I cant wait to read this book, because I love the sound of it! Great review!
    - Farah @ MajiBookshelf


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