Page Count: 272
Published on: April 15, 2014
Published by: Dutton Books for Young Readers
Genre(s): Nonfiction, Memoir, Contemporary, Autobiography
My Rating: 4 stars
A touchingly honest, candidly hysterical memoir from breakout teen author Maya Van Wagenen
Stuck at the bottom of the social ladder at pretty much the lowest level of people at school who aren’t paid to be here,” Maya Van Wagenen decided to begin a unique social experiment: spend the school year following a 1950s popularity guide, written by former teen model Betty Cornell. Can curlers, girdles, Vaseline, and a strand of pearls help Maya on her quest to be popular?
The real-life results are painful, funny, and include a wonderful and unexpected surprise—meeting and befriending Betty Cornell herself. Told with humor and grace, Maya’s journey offers readers of all ages a thoroughly contemporary example of kindness and self-confidence.
I've had this book for quite a while, almost a year, but I had been meaning to read it. The whole premise could be a fictional story, but it is actually Maya Van Wagaden's memoir.
When I first started reading Popular; I thought it was kind of unrealistic, but when I go when I really got into it, it started to become believable. I really related to Maya and her shy demeanor. The overall message is great for young readers, but it also really rings true for an older reader like myself. I really liked the insight into the mentality of middle school-ers and a diverse school. The whole ending was really sweet and I gave the end 5 stars. The middle was alright, but kind of unrealistic. When I was reading the book, I had a hard time thinking that this book was based on real events, but by the end of it I was totally with it.
Overall, this was really sweet, and really nicely written. I really enjoyed Maya's voice, and her writing style was really nice to read. If you enjoy memoirs, contemporaries, and funny novels; then you will love this book.
I hope you enjoyed this review!