It's tough being a geek. Maya knows all about it. Sick of being ignored at best and reviled at worst, she decides it's time to challenge the high school hierarchy. How? By spending a year following a popularity guide written for 1950s teenagers, that's how. She wears 1950s clothes, hats and pearls. She changes her hair every week. She puts on a girdle. Pretty soon people stop ignoring her. Then she faces her toughest task; she defies the rigid school cafeteria caste system, clique by popular clique, sitting where the hell she wants and insisting that the jocks, cheerleaders and criminals talk to her. Finally, triumphantly, she takes down that most all-American of rituals; the Prom. Maya Van Wagenen was 13 when she conducted this extraordinary experiment and not much older when she wrote this witty, intelligent and ultimately uplifting book. It's full of insight, not least the realisation that the pursuit of popularity exacts a price. She's so brave, kind, delightful and original that you'll marvel at her courage as you cheer her attempts to subvert the established social order. 12+
Books in the same area; The Popularity Papers, Before I Fall, Finding Cassie Crazy, Geek Girl.