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What My Girlfriend Doesn't Know

What My Girlfriend Doesn't Know

4.5 122
by Sonya Sones

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A teen boy confronts the complications of love in this relatable free verse novel featuring a new cover and larger trim size.

Don’t get me wrong—my girlfriend’s amazing.
But the way things have been going lately,
I’m starting to believe that the only thing worse
than not getting what you


A teen boy confronts the complications of love in this relatable free verse novel featuring a new cover and larger trim size.

Don’t get me wrong—my girlfriend’s amazing.
But the way things have been going lately,
I’m starting to believe that the only thing worse
than not getting what you want,

is getting it.

Picking up where What My Mother Doesn’t Know leaves off, this is the story of what happens next—told from the perspective of Murphy, Sophie’s new boyfriend. And even though Murphy’s thrilled to be with Sophie, the consequences of their relationship—and the temptations outside of it—force him to consider everything he knows about love. Told in free verse and brimming with authenticity, this novel provides unique insight into the mind of a young man.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Janice DeLong
This novel-in-verse is a "selfie" of the highest order. It is more poignant and humorous for being told in the voice of Robin Murphy, an outsider and object of ridicule par excellence. No one sits with Robin at lunch and when anyone else does something really dumb, his peers will call the gaffe a "Murphy." Enter, Sophie—attractive, creative, and surrounded by her crowd. What do these two have in common? The beautiful part of this novel is that during the summer of their fourteenth year, Sophie and Robin discover each other at an art museum by accident, and soon they realize how much they like each other. Sharing a sense of humor, intellectual level, and interest in art, they fall in love. This is beautiful, especially Sophie's loyalty in the face of brutal rejection when school begins in the fall. There is a great deal that the young audience can and will learn from this story about courage in the face of bullying and strength under fire. However, there is a less appealing side of the book, particularly much sexual foreplay and nudity. For the innocent early teen, this is heady stuff, and for the young reader who is sexually active, the author seems to give tacit approval to precisely the type of intimacy that may lead to promiscuity and heartbreak. What Sones "doesn't know" seems to be the adult writer's responsibility to her readership. Reviewer: Janice DeLong
Publishers Weekly

Returning with a sequel to the well- received What My Mother Doesn't Know, Sones delivers another engaging story about young love, this time from the boy's perspective. This free-verse novel opens with 14-year-old Robin worrying that he will soon be dumped by his girlfriend, Sophie (star of the previous book), who is being ostracized at school for dating "the guy whose last name people use as a diss." ("Let's face it./ I'm the type of guy/ who doesn't even have any buddies/ on my buddy list," Robin says.) But Sophie is her own person and together they form a plan to rise above the derision by laughing at themselves. Robin is believable and endearing as he struggles to make sense of his devotion to his "amazing girlfriend," his nascent sexuality and his attraction to Tessa, a girl in his art class at Harvard who is refreshingly unaware that he is the butt of jokes at his high school. When Sophie catches him kissing Tessa, Robin has to do something dramatic to win her back. Concrete poems and comics punctuate the text, adding interest to the form. The author's fans will be delighted to have a new installment written with the same raw honesty and authentic voice as the original. Final art not seen by PW. Ages 12-up. (June)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
KLIATT - Claire Rosser
To quote the review of the hardcover in KLIATT, May 2007: This is a sequel to What My Mother Doesn't Know, telling the story of Sophie and Robin's romance from Robin's point of view. Since he has always been a social outcast, he is used to it; but it kills him to see Sophie become an outcast once she reveals to their high school world that the two are a couple. Sones writes Robin's story using poetry throughout, in the poetry-novel format. Sophie is swept away by her romance with Robin, sharing their love of art and their intelligence, but she is hurt when her friends reject her. The social bullies have always picked on Robin, and now they add Sophie to their victim list. Robin finds a way to feel good about himself when he starts taking art classes at nearby Harvard University and is accepted easily by the college students, who don't know he is a high school freshman. Things get better at high school for Robin and Sophie, and Sones (through Robin) tells how that happens. This is a good choice for creative students who sometimes feel ostracized in high school. It deals honestly with sexual feelings. Strong emotions of love, of humiliation, anger, and shame drive the poetry and the reader forward. Reviewer: Claire Rosser
VOYA - Kimberly Paone
This book picks up almost immediately where What My Mother Doesn't Know (Simon & Schuster, 2001/VOYA October 2001) left off. Popular Sophie and outcast Robin-better known by his last name, Murphy, which has become synonymous with "loser"-have just spent an amazing winter break together falling in love. Now it is back to reality-school. Robin is nervous that Sophie will ignore him, even expects her to do so, but when Sophie joins him for lunch, Robin's happiness is only dampened by the fact that her association with him has now made Sophie a pariah as well. Even Sophie's two best friends have abandoned her, so it becomes Sophie and Robin against the world. Unfortunately their classmates are not the only problem that they face. As Robin starts taking a college-level art class and Sophie's friend Rachel sees the error of her ways, the couple spends time apart and it could be the downfall of their relationship. Sones's wonderful free verse comes from Robin's point of view this time, but it is just as authentic and heart wrenching as Sophie's voice in the first book. Teens will devour this book and again will be left wishing for more at the end. Both Sophie and Robin are unforgettable characters, and their trials and triumphs are completely recognizable and easy to relate to by teens their age. It is not necessary to have read the first book to understand the second, so buy multiple copies-it will fly off the shelves.
School Library Journal

Gr 8 Up
This sequel to What My Mother Doesn't Know (S & S, 2001) stands completely on its own. Robin's life at Cambridge High School is miserable. The arty outsider's last name becomes the pejorative slang of the school-as in, "Don't be such a Murphy." His lot improves, however, when popular Sophie becomes his girlfriend despite the detriment to her reputation. Better still, the freshman is invited to audit an art class at Harvard. It is his homecoming; for once, he is the comedian rather than the butt of jokes. One of the college freshmen even shows some romantic interest in him. Written as a novel in verse, this title is a fast-paced, page-turning romp that gives authentic voice to male youth even when it is painfully truthful.
—Leah KrippnerCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Kirkus Reviews
Six years after What My Mother Doesn't Know sizzled onto the scene, Sones returns to continue the story of teen sweethearts Sophie Stein and Robin Murphy. Her signature free-verse poems give class-loser Robin voice this time, allowing him to describe his feelings as Sophie's public acceptance of him makes her a social pariah; as he explores the physical and emotional roller-coaster of first love; as he remakes himself from outcast to one-of-the-cool-crowd when he audits a Harvard art class-and finds himself attracted to one of that cool crowd. The excruciatingly painful dynamics of the high-school in-crowd receive a thorough treatment, as does Robin's ambivalence with them: He recognizes Sophie's pain at her rejection by formerly close friends, but at the same time, he understands that this very rejection makes her need him all the more. Robin emerges as an appealingly flawed character whose desires-for love, for acceptance, for sex-will be instantly recognized by readers. If this offering lacks some of the intensity of its predecessor, it nevertheless provides both an opportunity to revisit two likable characters and the advantage of a fresh viewpoint. (Fiction/poetry. YA)

Product Details

Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
Publication date:
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File size:
2 MB
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Read an Excerpt

Piece of Advice from Me to Me

Better brace yourself,

Because you
are about to be dumped.

Big time.

But It'll All Be Over in a Minute

be over
and done with.
Sophie's just standing there
staring at me
from across the cafeteria.

Look at her.
Have you ever seen anyone so beautiful
in your life?

How could a girl like her
ever have wanted
to be with a guy like me?
Even just for two weeks?

Grace is waving her over.
Rachel's calling her.
"Fifi. Hey, Fee, we're over here!"

But I'm calling her, too.
Calling her with my eyes.
Come to me, Sophie.

Come to me . . .

Aw, Man

Who am I kidding?
I know exactly
what she's gonna do.

A second from now
she'll yank those killer blue eyes of hers
away from mine

and walk straight over to Rachel and Grace.
Like I'm not even here.
Like the best two weeks of my life




But They Did Happen

With everyone gone for winter break,
Sophie and I were
the only two people on the planet.

It was sort of like we were inside
one of those little snow globes,
you know?

Just the two of us,
completely alone,
chilling under that thick glass dome --

and drawing and dancing
and kissing . . .

And I practically went into shock
when Sophie looked straight into my eyes
and told me she loved me.

Even if I come down
with a severe case of amnesia,
I'll never forget those two weeks.

And I'll Never Forget Those Kisses, Either

making out with Sophie
was a very big deal for me.

I'm not exactly what you'd call
the most experienced guy in the world.

So I'm the least experienced guy
in the world.

So Sophie was the first girl
I ever laid lips on.

But it was definitely
worth waiting
fourteen years for.

Meet the Author

Sonya Sones has written five YA novels-in-verse: To Be Perfectly Honest (A Novel Based on an Untrue Story), Stop Pretending, One of Those Hideous Books Where the Mother Dies, What My Mother Doesn’t Know, and its companion, What My Girlfriend Doesn’t Know. Her books have received many honors, including a Christopher Award, the Myra Cohn Livingston Poetry Award, and a Los Angeles Times Book Prize nomination. But the coolest honor she ever got was when What My Mother Doesn’t Know made it onto the American Library Association’s list of the Top 100 Most Banned Books of the Decade (to see why, see p.46). She lives near the beach in southern California, and only tells the occasional fib. Visit her at SonyaSones.com or follow @SonyaSones on Twitter.

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What My Girlfriend Doesn't Know 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 121 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Okay so i just have 3 things to say.... 1. Im reading off of my moms nook and i love it. 2. This book is ah-mazing. And 3...i finished it in 1 and a half days. Lol sad right?? I just COULDNT PUT IT DOWN!!!!! Haha im 13 and i have never been able to sit for soo longgg and read a book. I mean seriously, how much more inlove can a girl get???
Raymond Cunningham More than 1 year ago
This book is a diff. Version of What My Mother Doesnt Know which is Robins girlfriend speaking. Both books are incredibly amazing and so touching. Recommended for ages 13+. Its suuuuch a teen flick ;)
Guest More than 1 year ago
What my Girlfriend Doesn`t Know has become one of my favorite books. Sonya Sones writes in such a creative way that I could not put the book down. At first I did not realize that What my Girlfriend Doesn`t Know was asquel to What My Mother Doesn`t Know. But this book is totally different from because this is told from Robin`s point of view not Sophie`s. It tells all about Robin`s love for Sophie and their fun times together. This novel is so cute and very surprising. Any girl who wants to know how boys think should buy this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this book in three hours! I am 12 and would recomend this book for 12-16. I also read one of those hideous books where the mother dies and what my mother doesn't know. But this time sonya sones wrote from a boys perspective. I thought it was well put together.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An excellent book for teens to read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is real in so many ways
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love it so much(:
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great read if you read What my mother doesnt know by the same author
Books-Rule_Cats-Do-Too More than 1 year ago
I love Sonya Sones. All of her books are written in the same lyrical style. This book is slightly different from her others though, as it is the first book she wrote from a boys point of view. However, Sones still manages to fill it with a perfect understanding of what a teenage guy goes through. What My Mother Doesn't Know is probably one of my favorite books, and I loved getting to spend more time in Sophie and Robins world. It was a very nice sequel and a wonderful read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I red the 1st 1 and luved it! Wen i found out thete waz a c-quel, i waz so x-cited!! I finished it in 2 hrs. I waz so heartbroken at times, and sometimes soph made me wanna scream at times at times and i loved murphy's journey and i loved him all through his hole journey, tho some of his actions actions were questionable. Im 12 3/4, and i love the 2 books!!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Such a good book!
mickychelle More than 1 year ago
I havent read this one yet but i red the first od it was AMAZING!!! Cant wait to read this one
buzzlightyear More than 1 year ago
this book is good. this book was good. this book is veryyyy good(: buzz lightyear is that bomb lke ticktick(:
Elizabeth Torres More than 1 year ago
its like a poerty diary but its a guy telling the story if u just read the sample its ughh well try it yourself
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I dont think there is any swx just maube it alks about it thats all okau
SleepDreamWrite More than 1 year ago
Poor guy. So many questions running through his mind. This one I found a little, well, a lot, better. And its from Murphy's POV. There's moments that was adorable, like the two communicating with each other through their sketching, drawing. Did it remind anyone of that music video for Bad Day? Anyway, this one also had its share of the angst moments as well. And the ending, I liked because with other books I've read, you have endings that are either too wrapped with a bow, or left at a point where it doesn't feel like one or ones like this where it ended at the right time. But you still wanted the story to keep going. If any of that makes sense. So these were interesting verse novels and the writing was pretty good in this one.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I lovethis book the pages are soshort and will hlp on my ar points thank you for this book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is absolutely amazing. I wish there was more books! If im being completely honest here, i actually cried. Amazing, well written. 10/10 :)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Lol adorable.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book so much. I read 20 pages in one day and then the rest the next day. Its sad that i finished it so quickly because now i have nothing to do. I cant wait to read the next book. I am only 11 and it was awesome. There was a lot of sexual content in it though.
miztrebor More than 1 year ago
Again, Sonya Sones brings a great novel in the form of poetry. What My Girlfriend Doesn’t Know is the sequel to Sones’ free-verse novel What My Mother Doesn’t Know, and was a great addition to the first book. It was a little weird going from book one to this book because of the POV switch from Sophie as the narrator to it being told by Robin, but in time I grew to like him, as well. I feel that Sones was able to capture the mindset of a teenage male accurately, and that’s part of the success of this book. While I didn’t like his voice all the time or some of the decisions made in the story, I feel that Robin did things how even I would have at that age. The way Sones uses poetry to tell a story, rather than prose, is what makes her writing so enjoyable to me. There might be a lack of word count, but there’s just as much depth to what the sparse pages hold for the reader. I also liked how there were a few poem/chapters that were “concrete poems,” which  used words to create a picture instead of just having the words describe the subject. I continue to be pleased with Sones’ work and can’t wait to see what else she has written.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was an awesome and beutiful book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was hooked on this book. I would stay up till 3 am on school nights! Great book! Highly reccomended!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Its touching and theirs ups and downs. Which i love.....