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3.2 19
by Alissa Grosso

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For reigning popularity queen Hamilton Best, the very idea of graduation is filled with fear. She's always been the star of Fidelity High's most exclusive clique, idolized for her perfection and her fabulous parties—you know you're "in" when you make Hamilton's guest list. As high school draws to a close, Hamilton is about to lose everything that makes her who


For reigning popularity queen Hamilton Best, the very idea of graduation is filled with fear. She's always been the star of Fidelity High's most exclusive clique, idolized for her perfection and her fabulous parties—you know you're "in" when you make Hamilton's guest list. As high school draws to a close, Hamilton is about to lose everything that makes her who she is. To make matters worse, the clique is slowly coming apart at the seams. Although the hand-picked members—Olivia, Zelda, Nordica, and Shelly—all have their own agendas, desires, and secrets, they do have one thing in common: they're desperate to break away from Hamilton. Yet Hamilton has the biggest and most shocking secret of all, one that only her devoted boyfriend Alex knows. If the truth got out, it would completely destroy her fragile world. And she'll do anything to keep that from happening.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Peg Glisson
Hamilton and her clique rule at Fidelity High, where students anxiously scan her party lists to learn if they are invited. It is senior year and Hamilton wants things to stay as they are forever. Not so, however for the others in the clique: Olivia, her best friend since kindergarten, goth-leaning Zelda, subdued Nordica, or social climbing Shelly, each of whom have turned against Hamilton and are trying to "bring her down." Hamilton's boyfriend Alex knows a secret about Hamilton the four girls do not and struggles to maintain the equilibrium of the group while keeping her secret but not committing to being there for her forever. About two-thirds through the book the narrative shifts from alternating chapters by the girls to Alex's point-of-view, and it is here that the reader learns what is really going on. The girls' chapters are tedious reading, filled with typical teenage angst and infighting and some confusing scenes involving Alex. The pace quickens when Alex picks up the story, filling in some of the holes and taking the reader to a very inconclusive conclusion. While the last third of the book has a real twist and enters territory not often part of YA literature, most of the book meanders, leaving one to wonder what is the point. Grammatical errors and unrealistic dialogue make this largely mediocre, although readers who plough through will find food for thought in the handling of Hamilton's secret. Reviewer: Peg Glisson
Kirkus Reviews
Everyone knows that high-school senior Hamilton Best throws the best and most exclusive parties. Suddenly someone is beating her to the punch by posting anonymous guest lists to her own party. This queen of popularity is certain it's one of her clique and that she's plotting her downfall. Who could it be? Olivia, chosen back in kindergarten, but now tired of always being second in charge; Nordica, a meek underclassman rescued by Hamilton; Zelda, a freak who's tolerated because of her association with Hamilton; or bitchy Shelly, the only one to become a member on her own accord? Alternating chapters reveal their true feelings for and conspiracies toward Hamilton. Readers may wonder why five such antagonistic girls would even remain friends, especially when Hamilton's loner boyfriend, Alex, comes between them. (Hamilton thinks he's grown distant, Zelda has a crush on him, Olivia refuses his stealthy advances and Shelly's ready to steal him out from under Hamilton.) Even their dialogue sounds stilted at times ("From where does this sudden sense of altruism spring?"). But readers who stick around for the second part of this debut, narrated by Alex, will discover the girls' shocking true identities, how Hamilton is indeed overthrown and Alex's mysterious role in it all. An interesting ending makes the inconsistent path worth the ride. (Fiction. YA)

Product Details

North Star Editions
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
5.10(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.80(d)
Age Range:
12 Years

Meet the Author

A former children's librarian and newspaper editor, Alissa Grosso is the author of the young adult novels Popular and Ferocity Summer. She is a member of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) and currently works as a sales consultant for a book distributor. Grosso grew up in New Jersey, where she graduated from Lenape Valley Regional High School, and earned a bachelor's degree in English from Rutgers University. She now lives in the Philadelphia area.

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Popular 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 19 reviews.
Emvy More than 1 year ago
Reading the description of this book to myself, I thought this would be another superifical book about high school popularity and how desperate girls were to be popular, etc. And, for the first half of the book, that's somewhat what it was. But, then it got interesting. The book introduces five main characters, each part of the school's most popular clique - Hamiliton, Olivia, Shelley, Nordica, and Zelda. Hamiliton is the queen bee of the group. Olivia is the honest and sarcastic one. Shelley is a wanna-be queen bee. Nordica is the shy one, and also the youngest of the group. Zelda likes to wear black and might be described as goth. Honestly, till a certain point in the book - the big twist around page 200 - the book seems to lack a focus. Okay, they're in high school. Okay, they're popular. Okay, they have parties. Throughout the first part of the book, everything was pretty slow because of this. I probably wouldn't have continued reading if I hadn't known about the mind-blowing twist before hand. The big twist is really what makes the book. And therefore, I'm not going to give it away. But just know, it is a really interesting and unexpected plot turn. I usually can predict things pretty easily in books. However, in this book I was completely stumped. Let's just say that my guess involved something with one of the main characters being some sort of fairy who likes to prey on teenage girls. (Don't worry, this isn't it!) One big con I noticed throughout the book was that the author sometimes used vocabulary that high schoolers just wouldn't use (I know, I am one). For instance, at one point I remember a character said the word ninny. I don't know about you, but not once have I heard that word used at my high school. Overall, this was a pretty good book, one I might recommend to my friends if they're looking for a quick and interesting read. 3.5/5 Stars.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
At my school, there are Populars, Nerds, and Moderates. Moderates are in the middle, like I am. I think Nerds are nerdy, aka weird, and populars are awesome! I was asked to be a Popular, but I like Moderates. They arent nerdy, and they arent accused of being mean. Moderates rule! ~Emma
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Dont listen to them just keep being awsome they r just liing
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am a nerd and dont care about populars because theyr mean
SteveR_NJ More than 1 year ago
I will admit that I initially read Popular because I used to be in a writing group with the author. I'm an adult male - books about teenage girls are NOT my normal fare. But Popular surprised and greatly pleased me. In fact, after finishing the first time I went right back and re-read it. Without giving away too much, it's a fascinating, deep look into people under extreme stress and coping the best they can. It doesn't matter whether you're a tweener or a teen or a GenX'er like me, it's a great read with a terrific twist. I really cared about the characters, and cheered at the end.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am definetly a nerd, and we despise you because you are perfect, and you point out all or idiosyncrasys, and you are jealous of our knowledge, and your lack thereof. You must point out our fashion flaws, and gossip the with your friends about what you saw us wearing. You are very exclusive, and talk to no one but your friends. Thats why.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Not commenting on book... im just super bored
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If ur so good reccommend some brands and styles and places to go for fashion hair and nails.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
So confusing
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The headingd the question
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Whats up reply
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Exactly No one is perfect and the way you guys are acting is stupid.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Your a stupid brat
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ok nerd town, let me just apoligize beforehand, cuz ima get all ghetto on you. Who the hell do you think you are, comin up in here bashin all the girls who have a better social life than you?! Yeah, nerdo, go join a social group! Or get dafuk outta other girls buisness! BYEE HON, HAVE A NICE LIIIFE! :*