After reading We Were Liars a couple of months ago, I decided to take a look at E. Lockhart’s other work.
Since this book was an honorable mention for the Printz award and has a good average on Goodreads, I decided to go with (the longest title ever) The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks.
The Disreputable History is the story of a 15 year old girl attending Alabaster Prep School, a place where people are defined by the groups they spend time with. Frankie’s body changes over the summer before her sophomore year, and she ends up getting the attention of one of the popular boys in school, Matthew Livingston.
While she is excited to have the attention of one of the cutest boys in the school, she is also aware of the way he views her: helpless, adorable, young. He often blows her off in favor of hanging out with his friends, one in particular named Alpha, in a secret society (The Loyal Order of the Basset Hounds). In order to prove herself worthy of both the society and equality with the guys, she starts to infiltrate the system with great results.
This was unlike any YA book I’ve ever read, in particular one about a teenage girl. Frankie is not your typical 15 year old female character. Yes, she is attracted to a boy and wants his attention, but she also finds it important that he see her on equal terms. She is acutely aware of the way the girls around her are seen, both by boys and the girls themselves.
She is a young feminist. I feel like strong female characters are usually in the form of Katniss or Tris. In those books (which I still love), there is some sort of powerful force that is harming the population and a strong girl steps up to change things. In the case of Frankie, she is a 15 year old girl looking for equality among the sexes within her own little universe of school. It’s life. She is smart, but still thinks like a 15 year old girl. There was no “Dawson’s Creek Syndrome” making her sound wise beyond her years. I tagged a lot of pages because there were some great points within.
I don’t know about E. Lockhart’s other books, but two have already pleased me greatly.
I’ll have to check out her others.