Lucy is a bit of a pushover, but sheâs ambitious and smart, and she has just received the opportunity of a lifetime: a scholarship to a prestigious school, and a ticket out of her broken-down suburb. Though sheâs worried she will stick out like badly cut bangs among the razor-straight students, she is soon welcomed into the Cabinet, the supremely popular trio who wield influence over classmates and teachers alike.Â
Linh is blunt, strong-willed, and fearlessâeverything Lucy once loved about herself. She is also Lucyâs last solid link to her life before private school, but she is growing tired of being eclipsed by the glamour of the Cabinet.
As Lucy floats further away from the world she once knew, her connection to Linhâand to her old lifeâthreatens to snap. Sharp and honest, Alice Pungâs novel examines what it means to grow into the person you want to be without leaving yourself behind.
An NPR Best Book of the Year
AÂ Kirkus ReviewsÂ Best Book of the Year
A YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults selection
A Texas Tayhas Reading List Selection
"A bracing, enthralling gut-punch and an essential read for teens, teachers, and parents alike."Â âKirkus Reviews, Starred review
"This daring work with an authentic protagonist teaches important lessons about being yourself while navigating through life."âSchool Library Journal, Starred review
"Lucyâs struggle to find her place and sense of self will have aÂ wide appeal for teen readers and is a welcome addition to the prep-school canon."âBooklist, Starred review
"Lyrical, enchanting prose from a narrator with perception so acute she cannot help but share it immerses readers into the very heart of every scene. This is highly recommended for classrooms and libraries [and] a superb choice for book discussion groups and world young adult literature survey courses."--VOYA, Starred review
"PartÂ Mean Girls,Â partÂ Lord of the Flies,Â and partÂ Special Topics in Calamity Physics,Â this well-observed and unsentimental novel taps into what is primal within privileged adolescent girls."âThe Bulletin, Starred review
"Lucyâs narrationÂ pulls readers alongside her uncertain navigation of two worlds, and we canât helpÂ but cheer in solidarity as Lucy recognizes assimilation masquerading as inclusion,Â refuses to back down, and instead embraces who she is."âHorn Book Magazine
"In a novel filled with strong visual images, Pung draws a sharp contrast between authenticity and deception, integrity and manipulation. Against the vividly painted backdrops of two very different communities, she traces Lucyâs struggle to form a new identity without compromising the values she holds closest to her heart."âPublishers Weekly
About: From an author Amy Tan calls “a gem,” this is a witty, highly acclaimed novel that’s “part Mean Girls, part Lord of the Flies” (The Bulletin, Starred review) about navigating life in private school while remaining true to yourself.
About: From an author Amy Tan calls âa gem,âÂ this is a witty, highly acclaimed novel thatâs âpartÂ Mean Girls,Â partÂ Lord of the Fliesâ (The Bulletin, Starred review) aboutÂ navigating life in private school while remaining true to yourself.
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