The Lonely Hearts Club

( 166 )


Love is all you need... or is it? Penny's about to find out in this wonderful debut.

Penny is sick of boys and sick of dating. So she vows: no more. It's a personal choice. . .and, of course, soon everyone wants to know about it. And a few other girls are inspired. A movement is born: The Lonely Hearts Club (named after the band from Sgt. Pepper). Penny is suddenly known for her nondating ways . . . which is too bad, because there's this ...

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The Lonely Hearts Club

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Love is all you need... or is it? Penny's about to find out in this wonderful debut.

Penny is sick of boys and sick of dating. So she vows: no more. It's a personal choice. . .and, of course, soon everyone wants to know about it. And a few other girls are inspired. A movement is born: The Lonely Hearts Club (named after the band from Sgt. Pepper). Penny is suddenly known for her nondating ways . . . which is too bad, because there's this certain boy she can't help but like. . . .

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Editorial Reviews

Julie Just
It's hard not to get caught up in this good-natured revenge fantasy…
—The New York Times
Children's Literature - Anita Barnes Lowen
Penny has had it with guys! "They're all lying, cheating scum of the earth. Yes, every last one of them. Pure evil." Inspired by the Beatles poster hanging on her bedroom wall, she founds "The Lonely Hearts Club"—membership of one. "I, Penny Lane Bloom do solemnly swear never to date another boy for as long as I shall live." But "you can't really have a club with one person" and much to Penny's surprise, her club grows by leaps and bounds and attracts the attention of Principal Braddock. "'s starting to get out of hand, he tells Penny's parents.'s causing some problems at school...Penny is using her unfortunate experiences to turn the rest of the female population against the males at this school." But even Principal Braddock's interdiction will not stop "The Lonely Hearts Club." The club started because Penny was sick of guys, but now it has become more about the girls focusing on themselves and helping one another. But maybe (Could it be that hottie Ryan is showing some interest in Penny?) the focus should not be on never dating, but on staying true to your friends. A quick and thoroughly entertaining read featuring a feisty group of girls. Some teenage drinking and drunkenness and implied sexual encounters. Reviewer: Anita Barnes Lowen
School Library Journal
Gr 9–11—Penny Lane Bloom is stung by love and vows to give up boys and dating for the rest of her high school days. She and her older sisters, Lucy (in the Sky with Diamonds) and (Lovely) Rita grew up with parents who were huge Beatles fans so it's no surprise that Penny calls her no-dating club The Lonely Hearts Club. There are lots of fun references to the Fab Four throughout the book. Now unfettered by the rules of high school dating and courtship, Penny is free to be, and enjoy, herself. Other girls notice her burgeoning self-confidence and her infectious joie de vivre. They want to join the club too, so what began as one girl's personal rebellion becomes a school-wide revolution. Formal rules strictly forbid dating, so when swearing off boys doesn't work and Penny meets her match, she has to keep the relationship on the q.t. Eventually club rules are amended and dating is permitted, but with the caveat that friends come first, so no ditching your girls just because a guy calls at the last minute. The plot is fairly predictable, but it moves along at a quick enough pace to hold readers' interest. The story is a gentle reminder to girls who may fall head over heels and sometimes jeopardize solid friendships for a romantic relationship. Fortunately, Eulberg injects the right amount of humor so the message doesn't come across as too heavy-handed.—Patricia N. McClune, Conestoga Valley High School, Lancaster, PA
Kirkus Reviews
In a spirited, feminist debut, musician Eulberg traces the resilience of a 16-year-old suburban high-school junior who turns her disappointment in love into a happy affirmation of autonomy and friendship. When Penny Lane Bloom is jilted, she turns for solace to the only guys who have never broken her heart: John, Paul, George, and Ringo. Tired of the boy runaround, Penny starts the Lonely Hearts Club, devoted to "the benefits of being single," with herself as the only member. Soon, however, the other girls at McKinley High School join with enthusiasm (and some occasional cattiness), like Diane Monroe, the once-clingy arm fixture of star athlete Ryan Bauer, now destined for the basketball team. Swearing off boys might be a beautiful notion, but it's short-lived, as even Penny is tempted by Ryan, and the school principal fears a boys' backlash. The dialogue-heavy adventure addresses tender teen concerns of conformity versus self-preservation, but the formulaic plotting doesn't lift this effort above the rest, despite the mildly amusing Beatles gimmick. (Fiction. 14 & up)
VOYA - Ruth Cox Clark
Sixteen-year-old Penny Lane, devastated by her boyfriend's cheating, swears off guys and dating and forms The Lonely Hearts Club. Membership: one. The daughter of quirky Beatles fanatic parents, Penny knows the guys who won't let her down—the Fab Four. The school year begins with everyone shocked that Diane and Ryan, the perfect couple, broke up. Diane reaches out to Penny, the best friend she left behind to date Ryan. Tracy, Penny's new sidekick, takes some convincing that Diane is worthy of their friendship, but membership grows to three. Overhearing the trio talking, the hallways are abuzz about the girls-only club. Membership swells, and the antiguy focus shifts to supporting your friends. The girls study and hang out together and are there for each other, including Diane when she resigns from cheerleading to join the girls' basketball team. Agreeing that friends come first, club rules ease up to allow dating. Even Penny admits there are some good guys out there, including Diane's ex, Ryan. Along with weaving Beatles references into the story line, Eulberg's debut novel prefaces chapters with Beatles' song titles, opening with "Yesterday" and closing with "Here Comes the Sun." Through both touching and humorous incidents, the reader roots for Penny as she matures from a heartbroken teen into a confident young woman. Penny survives a long, cold, lonely winter, with a little help from her friends. With Diane and Tracy's blessings, Penny agrees to date Ryan, and they are last seen in his car, singing along with the Beatles' mix she made for him. This is a wonderful female empowerment novel. Reviewer: Ruth Cox Clark
School Library Journal - Audio
Gr 7–10—Penny Lane Bloom, the daughter of two Beatles fanatics, has sworn off boys for good following a disastrous summer romance with her long-time friend, Nate. Tired of the drama and heartbreak surrounding boys and dating, Penny forms "The Lonely Hearts Club," with herself as the sole member. Soon she recruits her best friend, Tracy, and recently dumped Diane, a former friend of Penny's who ditched her years ago for a boy. As Diane and Penny repair their friendship, girls begin flocking to the club seeking refuge in the boy-free zone while developing strong bonds of friendship with one another. Penny is overwhelmed by the group's influence and popularity, and impressed with the club's positive impact on its members. The girls soon realize, however, that the club's strict anti-dating rule may be a bit too harsh, especially when one of the cutest boys in school shows an interest in Penny. Along with accurately demonstrating the ups and downs of high school dating, Elizabeth Eulberg's novel (Point, 2009) is a reminder of the value of friendship and staying true to oneself. Khristine Hvam does a fine job of portraying Penny and her large cast of girlfriends, but her voicing of the male characters often sounds cartoon-like. She occasionally sounds too old for some of the teen characters, but this could be due to Eulberg's writing. Overall, the well-paced, upbeat narration mirrors the positive feeling of the novel.—Amy Dreger, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Beachwood, OH
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781455857708
  • Publisher: Brilliance Audio
  • Publication date: 6/1/2012
  • Format: CD
  • Edition description: Unabridged
  • Age range: 14 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 6.50 (w) x 5.40 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Elizabeth Eulberg

Elizabeth Eulberg was born and raised in Wisconsin before heading off to college in Syracuse and making a career in the New York City book biz. She lives outside of Manhattan with her three guitars, two keyboards, and one drumstick. In researching this book, she tried swearing off boys forever. It didn’t work. For more, visit Elizabeth at

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 166 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 166 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Ashley B for

    Penny Lane Bloom is sick of dating boys. All they do is cause her trouble and heartbreak. She vows to date no more for the next two years, until she graduates from high school. Penny decides to start a club: The Lonely Hearts Club (yep, like the Beatles).

    The club soon has multiple girls joining. These girls have also realized that they are changing themselves to get the guy, only to get hurt in return. Things change after an article in the school paper though, and Penny doesn't like how she is now known for having the "lonely heart."

    Besides, there is this one boy...

    This was an amazingly written debut novel. I loved every minute of reading, and I could not stop until I couldn't keep my eyes open any longer. The characters were fun and unique. The plot was totally original, which made the story even better.

    The Beatles references weren't over-done. It seemed like there were a lot of main characters, but that was okay, because the plot flowed nicely, and I got to know each character pretty well.

    Overall, THE LONELY HEARTS CLUB was very enjoyable and extremely cute. It is a great book about the meaning of friends, especially while in a relationship. A great debut!

    10 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 8, 2010

    I love the Lonely Hearts Club!

    This was an amazing book. Its about this girl named Penny she goes out with her best childhood friend Nate. Nate breaks her heart by cheating on her. So she starts The Lonely Hearts Club. The club was ment to be just for here but then her old (not really her friend)best friend's boyfriend broke up with her, Daina. Daina soon joins the Club and reclaims here friend ship with Penny. Soon news spreads about the club and then theres about 20 people in the club and it just keeps growing form there. This book also teached me that you need to find you true friends, and never lie, or backstab them. Also not to date a scumb bag!

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 17, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    No Lonely Heart

    I loved this book on so many different levels.

    First, let me say that Eulberg did a fantastic job of weaving the music of the Beatles into the very foundation of this story. From the names of the Bloom children to the flower power way of life her parents led all elements of the infusion were sheer perfection. I mean, seriously, how can a Beatles lover not like a book whose chapter titles are song names/lyrics?

    Now, let me move on to the biggest reason why I loved this book. I thought the lesson it has to teach young girls was filled with positivity. It didn't preach being spiteful or mean-spirited. The concept of The Lonely Hearts Club was productive and the fact that it was built on the concept of creating, sustaining and building friendships made it a lovely way for a young girl to work through the devastating heart-break of losing first love. Particularly given the fact that she works her way through it all to realize that this love was one-sided and perhaps thought (on her part) to be more than it really was.

    Speaking of friendships, I adored the multitudes of relationships Penny and her friends crafted. From the quirky territorial best friend, to the former BFF who dumped her for a boy friend then sought refuge in the club, to the girls who joined the just to be part of what was building to be the popular crowd, the characters were both realistic and enjoyable to read. Add to that the dumb, possessive, big man on campus jock-type that thought every girl wanted him and the sweet natured friend who happens to be a boy and you have the perfect recipe for age-appropriate teenaged angst.

    Though Penny's parents were flighty in the stereotypical hippie-type way I found them to be equally supportive given their lack of information about Penny's situation with Nate. They trusted her judgement, backed-her up when she was faced with adversity at school and were loving, helpful and caring individuals. I'll add that they also added in a healthy dose of humor to the overall story.

    I strongly encourage those young and old to read this book. It was good fun and filled with valuable life lessons about individuality, hoard mentality, love, and friendship.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 25, 2010

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    I Also Recommend:

    Loved this book!

    It has been a while since I was in high school, but the situations in this book were realistic, friends drifting because they start relationships and guys being..well guys. I also liked how the characters build themselves up throughout the story. This is a great feel good book for girls, but also behind all that "girl power" is some great guys. Learning that there are some real tools out there is part of growing up but so is finding out that there are some amazing guys too. Loved this book!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 23, 2010

    Spectacular teen romance

    THE LONELY HEARTS CLUB, by Elizabeth Eulberg, was an adorable reinvention of teenage girl-power with a bit of The Beatles in the mix. Penny had her heart broken by her long-time love and vowed never to let it happen again. With the strength of her friends at her side she became who she wanted to be and not what she thought guys wanted her to be.

    I absolutely adored this book! Any female who has ever had her heart broken can find relief in the idea of giving up men altogether. But banding together with girlfriends and taking a look on improving oneself can be the best gift those men can give you.

    The main girls in this book were fantastic. They were strong independently but became an unstoppable force when brought together by a common goal. Penny just wanted to survive her first heart-break, but a small conversation with an old friend sparked a movement that changed everything. Tracy and Diane were the best side-kicks. Tracy was always there to make me laugh with the crazy remarks she had about everything and everyone. And Diane was an inspiration by changing her high school image for herself, even though it caused social suicide. I truly admired the theme of friendship in this book. Penny and Diane's friendship was non-existent and then one day it was back to how it used to be. This situation shows a true friendship and it was marvelous to experience. And the camaraderie that the girls created was inspiring. They were always there for each other and molded their club to be a positive influence on those who needed it.

    The relationship between Penny and Ryan was delightful. Just when she gave up guys, a really great one came into the picture. The choice between swoon-worthy Ryan and her girlfriends dangled heavily over her head.

    The background for this whole book involved The Beatles. Personally I am not a huge fan of The Beatles, but how Penny idolized them and connected them into her life was irresistible. The recreation of 'Abbey Road' for the cover was truly ingenious!

    I highly recommend this book to any women who is looking for a pick-me-up after having her heart broken.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 25, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Penny Lane Rocks

    I was thrilled to get this book the other day mainly because I was like Penny Lane. I had struggled thru a bad patch with boys and the title spoke to me. But after I got thru the first part of the book, it was less about bashing guys and more about bringing your friends closer and relying on them, and not just on boyfriends. Penny's character has so much spunk, but she really shows that with your friends behind you, anything can happen. The ending was very believable and I walked away from it wanting more.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 10, 2010

    I loved the characters, story and idea of this story...I'm so looking forward to her next book!

    What an 'inspirationl' book, it makes me wanna get up and make my own club like that! The characters were so relatable and makes me wish there was a sequel! i would definately recommend this to any girl who has just had it with boys, whether it's their boyfriend, or their crush, they will have to agree with the well made points in the story! I love the theme of the book, Don't change for a boy and NEVER put the boy first over friends who will always be there for you when the boy will probably only be there a month! If the author, Elizabeth Eulberg keeps this up, having themes, and inspirational stories, she will come far in the writing world! She has definately set my expectations for her future books very high!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 7, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    THE LONELY HEARTS CLUB- A fun contemporary romance with just the right groove!

    The Beatles.
    A huge part of THE LONELY HEARTS CLUB is made up of Beatles talk. In general I love music being a part of a story, because it is something that can affect and change a person and story entirely. Unfortunately I am not really into the Beatles.
    There were some things in the story related to them and it felt cool, but the attitude of Penny’s parents and their worshipping the band started to annoy me after some time into the story. Like it was a smart solution circling your lives and decisions around the choices of famous musicians.

    Penny Lane.
    She’s the girl named after a Beatles song. She’s the founder of the lonely Hearts Club after being cheated on by her childhood love Nate. I tell you, you’ll totally get her point of founding the club in her decision to not wanting to be miserable anymore. And I loved that so many other girls felt the need to join.

    Clubs are always fun and this one’s dedicated to a good cause: no more heart break. The club is a place to get help and comfort from other girls that fast become friends. We get to know Penny’s best friend Tracey who fears to loose her friend over another. There is an old friend coming back into Penny’s life and now she has to sort out how to keep all of her friends.

    With time the ideals of the lonely hearts club start changing and it starts to be so much about friendship and the strength of a group of powerful girls. It’s an ode to femininity and independent women. The girls of the lonely hearts club do so many great and fun things together!

    But then Penny slowly falls in love even though she is the founder of the lonely hearts club. That love story really got my attention, because it lays the main focus on Penny’s feelings and thoughts, the transition from being sure about never dating again and slowly falling in love again.
    The blooming relationship is really cute, but sometimes Penny acted a bit too ignorant and not very sensible considering that that one guy would be willing to do everything for her. Just get him girl! Read yourselves how that blooming romance plays out in the end.


    THE LONELY HEARTS CLUB features some fun dialogues, ideas and characters. There are references to Beatles songs that are totally fitting just like Elizabeth Eulberg’s cute and girly writing. I’m looking forward to reading PROM AND PREJUDICE and TAKE A BOW!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 1, 2012

    Encore! Encore!

    Loved it! Read it 4 times. I still laugh, scream, jump around like a mental person, and cry. Well written. I only found one type-o. I was hooked till the end... not even that. I was hooked 4 times!!!! Amazing read for teens. And especially for teen Beatle fans!!!! 5 out of 5 stars.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 20, 2011


    I loved this book. It was kind of sappy but amazing. I love the beatles crazed parents and the story line
    Definitely a book that will make you happy and in a good mood. This book left me wanting to read more books like this. Girl power is definitely shown in here. Love it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 8, 2010

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    The Lonely Hearts Club by Elizabeth Eulberg Review

    The Beatles were the ones to say "love is all you need," and when I read this book, love was all I had. I was loving every minute and every page with a passion! It was fantastic and has officially become one of my 2010 favorites. Elizabeth Eulberg may be a debut author, but her writing style and The Lonely Hearts Club are magic, no question about it!

    Penny Lane doesn't exactly have a normal or what one may consider a typical home and family, but one thing she seems to have in common with just about every girl around is boy trouble, and she's got it in spades. With The Beatles as her inspiration, she just may have found a solution to all of her problems, and those of her friends.

    I really can't find any negatives about this book, other than I wish it hadn't ended, ever! But in all seriousness, if you ask me, there aren't any negatives about this book, it was wonderful. It was funny, quirky, realistic and with The Beatles all over it, and all through it, what's not to love? Even the cover is brilliant, don't you think?

    Eulberg has a fresh voice and I don't think she'll be going anywhere anytime soon. She spoke at the book festival I attended a while back and after meeting her, there's no question that her writing comes from the heart. Her personality is all over this book. While speaking to the crowd, she may have mentioned a sequel being in the works for The Lonely Hearts Club in the future, and I couldn't be more excited about that prospect...really I was jumping up and down!

    After finishing The Lonely Hearts Club, I most definitely have not had nearly enough of Penny Lane and her club of close friends. Whether it's Tracy, Diane, Morgan, Rita, Ryan or Penny's parents, I just adored them all and most definitely did not want to say goodbye. If you've got a sense of humor and are looking to add a new favorite to your shelves, look no further, The Lonely Hearts Club is the perfect book for everyone!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 4, 2010

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    I Also Recommend:

    wickedly cute

    Penny Lane hates guys - all guys. This starts from the moment she catches her perfect boy with another girl. All the years dreaming, flirting, and kissing immediately fly out the window. She so fed up that she's swearing off all boys until she graduates high school. Plus, she's not keeping quiet about her idea. She shares it with Tracy, her BFF, who thinks she's a little crazy. Then her ex-best friend is suddenly single and wants to hang out. Penny Lane almost doesn't meet Diane for coffee because Diane dropped her when she became a twosome, but when she does, she ends up spilling her whole Lonely Hearts Club idea. To her surprise, Diane loves the idea and wants to join. Together, they persuade Tracy, and they storm the school. Soon girls flock to their sides wanting to become part of the sisterhood. The boys however are not pleased, especially a cute boy flirts with Penny Lane. She did make the club rules, but can she break them and more importantly does she want to?

    A wickedly cute book. I wish there was a Lonely Hearts Club when I was in high school, I definitely would have joined. I LOVE the cover, very fun. I love the sisterhood and how everyone came together on Saturday Nights.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 10, 2010

    Loved it

    The characters are awesome. Love the Beatles connection.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 2, 2010

    I Also Recommend:


    i love this book! this book made me realize that there are plenty of girls out there who have gone through painful stuff but we don't need guys to be there all the time! its something that bring girls together. I LOVE this book & there is a good twist.Its worth buying. FOR SURE!!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 27, 2010

    Terrific Book

    I bought this book as it was a recommendation from Stephanie Meyer. Once I began to read it,I could not put it down. It was sooo great and I loved the characters. It was such a wonderful story that I hope Elizabeth writes a continuation of Penny Lane.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 25, 2010

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    Every teen age girl must read this book.

    I wish I have read someting like this when I was in school. Its a great book for girls to read and talk with with friends. Its great.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 4, 2010

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    I picked this book up because of all The Beatles references I noticed just from the cover and the description. It's an easy read, I finished in a day, but it's also very well written. I laughed out loud, and I felt that these characters were my best friends by the end of the book. And even though it's been awhile since I graduated high school, I was still captivated by the story.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 1, 2010


    I found this book inspiring, and I've never had guy issues. I liked how Penny reminded girls who their friends are and that you shouldn't forget or ignore them just because you have a boyfriend. This book really represented high school and standing up for yourself instead of following the crowd and getting beaten down by teenage males. I think this program would be good for a great many teenage girls who don't know when to just give up for a while. It's all about holding out for the right person, or at least a decent person to spend your time with, which is what all girls should do. Sometimes you need an all-out ban to really be free.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 23, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Very cute idea and well written

    This is a quick read, I finished it in less than a day. The story is very cute. I think Lonely Hearts it is better then any of the Sarah Dessen books, but appeals to the same group of readers/fans. Looking forward to future releases from this author.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 22, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    the lonely heart

    At some pivotal moment in their life, every teenage girl will come to the point where she will become fed up with boys and their typical immature shenanigans. Some might even go so far as to completely swear off the male sex for a certain period of time. A very few others will possibly not only stop dating boys, but they will encourage all their friends to do so and will then create a club where they can celebrate their self-induced single-ness with other like-minded females. Our hero, Penny Lane Bloom belongs to the last category.

    After finding herself with a broken heart yet again, Penny decides to swear off boys (except the Beatles) until after high school, choosing instead to focus on herself and her girlfriends by creating The Lonely Hearts Club (so named after the Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band album). Penny couldn't be happier with her new found freedom, even if she is only a club of one. But word of Penny's new club spreads quickly among the girls of her school who are also eager to shed their boy-troubles and Penny quickly finds herself on the outs with nearly every boy, some particularly catty girls, and even her principal.

    There were several things to love about Elizabeth Eulberg's debut novel The Lonely Hearts Club. First off, any novel that takes not only its title but several character names and a 'date' to a Beatles impersonators concert from the Fab Four cannot help but be entertaining. Additionally, I adore the lighthearted cover with its modern girly Abbey Road inspired cover. I also applaud Eulberg for creating some strong female characters who recognize the futility of centering their lives around the whims of immature males who go on to get good grades, join sports teams, and who understand the value of female friendship. Thank you for that.

    As much as I enjoyed Penny and the girls, I often found myself wondering if The Lonely Hearts Club had been written about eight years ago after listening to Penny's best friend repeatedly say "what to the ev" (gag) or how the girls applied shimmer powder before going to party. Shimmer powder? Yeah, that kind of stopped happening with anyone over the age of 10 after 2006. And those are only a few small details. I had issues with the basically nonexistent parents who were essentially present only to lend Penny her Beatles infatuation and the unbelievably unsupportive Principal who would have been slapped with several lawsuits quicker than you can say "advanced placement." And as much as I was rooting for Penny, though many of her exchanges with friends could sometimes be described as light and fun, they were usually awkward and extremely after-school-special unrealistic. Which I found extremely sad since all the components for making The Lonely Hearts Club into something really entertaining were right there. In the end, Penny and her club just failed to turn it into something more than a predictable 90's sitcom.

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