Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Review: The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart


Overall Impression: ****

Who/What decided me: I’ve quite forgotten, unfortunately. I’ve always wanted to read this book though.(I LOVE wax seals, and ‘disreputable’ is a word that holds such promise, don’t you think?)

Short synopsis (Goodreads): 

Frankie Landau-Banks at age 14: 
Debate Club. 
Her father’s “bunny rabbit.” 
A mildly geeky girl attending a highly competitive boarding school. 

Frankie Landau-Banks at age 15: 
A knockout figure. 
A sharp tongue. 
A chip on her shoulder. 
And a gorgeous new senior boyfriend: the supremely goofy, word-obsessed Matthew Livingston. 

Frankie Laundau-Banks. 
No longer the kind of girl to take “no” for an answer. 
Especially when “no” means she’s excluded from her boyfriend’s all-male secret society. 
Not when her ex boyfriend shows up in the strangest of places. 
Not when she knows she’s smarter than any of them. 
When she knows Matthew’s lying to her. 
And when there are so many, many pranks to be done. 

Frankie Landau-Banks, at age 16: 
Possibly a criminal mastermind. 

This is the story of how she got that way.



My Review: Confession, I love all things prep: ivy league schools, prep schools, uniforms, Ralph Lauren, weekends in the Hamptons, you name it. Have I ever really experienced those things, no. That’s why I read books like this. I liked this book A LOT better than I did Prep. I had picked Prep up expecting to read what I had gotten in The Disreputable History, but was sorely disappointed (and a little scandalized). Not until I read The Disreputable History did I finally get what I was hoping to out of a school about boarding schools and those that reside there. Make sense?
Frankie is an amazing character. Truly fantastic! The book opens up with her writing a letter to the headmaster taking blame for all of the things that went wrong. Hilarious! I was grabbed from that moment onward. 

The other characters were good fun as well. This isn’t a cookie-cutter book. Without giving too much away, I really liked how many twists were thrown in. At first, things just seem like they are going to go along just like they do at any other prep school, but this one goes deeper. As you go deeper, you get to know Frankie better and sympathize with her hopes and dreams. Yes, how she carries things out is slightly criminal, but it’s still amusing. I wish that I had enough brains and guts to be as much of a prankster as Frankie is.

The writing style sometimes threw me off. There were some parts that were written in ways that I’m not really used to; it’s hard to explain.  However, this doesn’t really detract from the story, and I was able to get into the flow of things fairly fast.

I hope Lockhart doesn’t stop here and keeps telling us about Frankie’s adventures in Junior and Senior years. I’ll definitely being trying some of her other stuff though, just because she is such a great story teller.

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