Sunday, May 12, 2013

Book Review: The Summer I Became a Nerd

On the outside, seventeen-year-old Madelyne Summers looks like your typical blond cheerleader—perky, popular, and dating the star quarterback. But inside, Maddie spends more time agonizing over what will happen in the next issue of her favorite comic book than planning pep rallies with her squad. That she’s a nerd hiding in a popular girl's body isn’t just unknown, it's anti-known. And she needs to keep it that way.

Summer is the only time Maddie lets her real self out to play, but when she slips up and the adorkable guy behind the local comic shop’s counter uncovers her secret, she’s busted. Before she can shake a pom-pom, Maddie’s whisked into Logan’s world of comic conventions, live-action role-playing, and first-person-shooter video games. And she loves it. But the more she denies who she really is, the deeper her lies become…and the more she risks losing Logan forever.  Quoted from Goodreads


This is such a cute book.  It's all about being true to yourself despite what other people think. It's Maddie, who by high school standars has got it made.  Popular cheerleader dating the football quarterback---sound a bit cliche?  It's supposed to.  After one horrible event in middle-school, Maddie decided to hide everything that might even hint at her secret nerd tendencies. At least until Logan messes everything up.

Really, I enjoyed Maddie's struggle.  She has to choose (at least in her eyes) between falling from the top of  the high school pyramid and the boy who is perfect for the person she really is. Plus Logan is just adorable.  He and Maddie are so absolutely cute together and actually have good chemistry   He's also really understanding about dealing with all her issues, so while there is a tiny bit of angst, it's mostly just fun watching them fall in love. 

I also really liked Logan and Maddie's best friends Dan and Terra.  Dan is hilarious. While Logan made being a nerd attractive, Dan was just funny. He's grumpy but absolutely loyal.  Then there's Terra. She's everything Maddie tries to be, but she's also a really good friend.  Despite all the secrets and lies Maddie's told over their relationship, she's still an understanding, caring friend.

As for all the nerd stuff, I thought it was kind of fun. With The Big Bang Theory and the amazing success of comic book to movie adaptions (Iron Man 3, anyone? I absolutely loved it) and Lord of the Rings films, nerd things are getting a lot more focus now. Granted, besides a few Archie Comics, which I don't even think counts in the comic book world, I've never read a comic, and LARPing isn't on my to do list, but I still found it a nice angle for the story. It makes the story stand out from so many other contemporary romance/coming of age books I've read recently.

So, if you're looking for a fun, light read, or just want a chance to delight your inner (or maybe not so inner) nerd, you should check out this book.  It's a delightful 3.5 stars for me and the perfect summer read.

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