'I think this might be the best YA novel...I've ever read. It's hilarious, and it's so very smart. I mean, I'm serious...It's really amazing.' - John Green, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Fault in Our Stars
From E. Lockhart, author of the New York Times bestseller and Zoella Book Club 2016 title, We Were Liars, comes a story about one girl who saw everything . . .
At the Manhattan School of Art and Music, where everyone is unique, Gretchen Yee feels ordinary. It doesn't help that she's known as the shy girl who sits alone at lunch, drawing pictures of her favourite superhero, just so she won't have to talk to anyone.
It's no surprise that Gretchen isn't exactly successful in the boy department. Her ex-boyfriend is a cold-fish-sometimes-flirty ex who she can't stop bumping into. Plus, she has a massive crush on a boy named, Titus but is too scared to make the first move. One minute he seems like a sensitive guy, the next, he's a completely different person when he's with his friends. She can't seem to figure boys out!
Gretchen has one wish: to be a fly on the wall in the boy's locker room. What are boys really like? What do they talk about?
This is the story of how one girl's wish came true.
Narrator Gretchen Yee will grab readers from the first page with her snappy commentary. Even at her Manhattan arts high school, she's a misfit. But the comic-book obsessed artist gets an unexpected chance to live as an alter ego when, for a week, she turns into a literal fly on the wall, trapped inside the boys' locker room. Lockhart (The Boyfriend List) sets up a clever parallel by making Gretchen's class read The Metamorphosis, and like Kafka's protagonist it is unclear what caused Gretchen's change (she suspects a philosophical old man she met on the subway, or a strange soda she drank on the way to school, among other things). Her sense of humor offsets her generally negative outlook, and the pace picks up during her time as a fly. As Gretchen buzzes around hundreds of naked bodies, she witnesses a lot of locker room drama, and worries about the morality of spying even as she categorizes their bums or describes an uncircumcised penis. She also realizes how insecure boys can be (she even learns that confidence is not always what makes someone sexy sometimes, as in the case of her crush its just the opposite). The conclusion wraps a bit neatly (and without much introspection), but readers will find enough thoughtful material here to keep buzzing through the pages. Ages 12-up.