The Treasure Map of Boys: Noel, Jackson, Finn, Hutch--and me, Ruby Oliver

The Treasure Map of Boys: Noel, Jackson, Finn, Hutch--and me, Ruby Oliver

by E. Lockhart

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Ruby is back at Tate Prep, and it’s her thirty-seventh week in the state of Noboyfriend. Her panic attacks are bad, her love life is even worse, and what’s more:

Noel is writing her notes, Jackson is giving her frogs, Gideon is helping her cook, and Finn is making her brownies. Rumors are flying, and Ruby’s already-sucky reputation is heading downhill.

Not only that, she’s also: running a bake sale, learning the secrets of heavymetal therapy, encountering some seriously smelly feet, defending the rights of pygmy goats, and bodyguarding Noel from unwanted advances.

In this companion novel to The Boyfriend List and The Boy Book, Ruby struggles to secure some sort of mental health, to understand what constitutes a real friendship, and to find true love—if such a thing exists.

From the Hardcover edition.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780375892653
Publisher: Random House Children's Books
Publication date: 07/28/2009
Series: Ruby Oliver Quartet , #3
Sold by: Random House
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 640,699
File size: 2 MB
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

E. Lockhart is the author of the highly acclaimed We Were Liars and the Ruby Oliver quartet (The Boyfriend List, The Boy Book, The Treasure Map of Boys, and Real Live Boyfriends), as well as Fly on the Wall, Dramarama, and How to Be Bad (the last with Sarah Mlynowski and Lauren Myracle). Her novel The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks was a Michael L. Printz Award Honor Book, a finalist for the National Book Award, and winner of a Cybils Award for Best Young Adult Novel. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.

From the Hardcover edition.

Read an Excerpt

Chapter 1

In laboratories dim
We bend to Fleischman's whim
And suffer twice a week
Horrors terrible to speak.
Will you deign
To ease my pain?
Or will I slowly
Go insane?
Say you'll be my partner true
In Chemistry, it's me and you.

--written on yellow legal paper in Noel's cramped, somewhat illegible scrawl; found in my mail cubby, folded eight thousand times and with a bit of coffee spilled on one corner.

the first day back from winter break, junior year, I walked into Chem to find a head of red cabbage on every lab table. Also a juicer. Tate Prep is the kind of school where the chemistry teacher has a budget to buy fourteen juicers. I go there on scholarship.

Mr. Fleischman started the class yelling, "Happy New Year, people! Wash your hands and juice your cabbages! No fingers in the machinery!"

He was a small white man, only five foot two, with a pug nose and a large bald spot ill concealed by a comb-over. He jumped up and down more than most fifty-year-olds do and dyed what little hair he had left a shiny black. "Kitchen science!" cried Fleischman. "That's our new unit, people. Everyday chemical reactions that happen in your very own home."

I washed my hands and juiced my cabbage. Sadly, I was familiar with the procedures for juicing vegetables because my mother had started the new year by embarking on a raw food diet. Her new idea of breakfast was celery juice.

The cabbage was my cabbage and my cabbage alone because Noel was late. I'd gotten his note that morning in my mail cubby, but I hadn't seen him since before the holiday.

"Say you'll be my partner true/In Chemistry, it's me and you," he'd written.
Only now he wasn't here.

"Come to the front and get six plastic cups, protective gloves, baking soda, orange juice, liquid Drano, ammonia and vinegar," announced Fleischman. Katarina and Ariel, golden girls of the junior class, were squealing at the semi-disgusting purple glop that had formed in our juicers.

"I think I'm gonna puke from the smell," said Ariel.

"Don't puke," called Fleischman. "There's no puking allowed in chemistry. Scientists never puke."

"You smell it," said Ariel. "See how you feel."

Fleischman ignored her. "Be careful with the ammonia, people. And the Drano. I'm not seeing the gloves on your hands. The gloves go on your hands. Is that too much to expect you to figure out?"

I had to make three trips to the front to get everything. The third time, Ariel was there too. She held a little dish of orange juice. "Hello, Ruby," she said to me. "How was your break?"

"Good," I answered. Since the debacles of sophomore year had died down, Ariel, Katarina and Heidi all spoke to me if they had to. But I knew what they really thought of me.

"We skied Mount Baker over New Year's," Ariel said.

"Cool." I shrugged. Skiing is not in my budget. I spent winter break helping my dad repair cracks in his greenhouse off the side of the houseboat we live in and watching way too many movies. Dad runs an obscure and deeply earnest gardening newsletter entitled Container Gardening for the Rare Bloom Lover.

Why was Ariel making conversation with me, anyhow?

"Yeah," she went on. "Me, Katarina and Heidi were all about Sneaky Pete and Blueberry Cat Track."

I had no idea what she was talking about. Possibly ski trails. Possibly coffee drinks. Video games? Sexual positions?

"But Cricket skied the Chute and Kim owned Gunners Bowl," Ariel went on. "Jackson, Kyle and those guys came for New Year's. Such an excellent party."


That was why she was telling me this.

Kim and Cricket are my ex-friends. Ariel was making sure I knew they'd all spent New Year's skiing together, which meant that Kim and Cricket were now firmly in the Katarina set.

"Spankin'," I said. Because of course it hurt that she had Kim and Cricket now. She meant it to hurt. There was nothing I could say in retaliation except something that would confuse her.

"Whatever," Ariel answered, wrinkling her nose.

I went back to my table and put spoonfuls of baking soda in my cups of cabbage juice.

The cabbage juice turned blue.

"I see it's turning blue, people!" Fleischman cried, jumping. "That's good. Now add precise dropperfuls of your various other substances to the blue cabbage juice, and make a record of how many droppers it takes to return the fluid to reddish purple. Then come to conclusions about the acidic and basic contents of your ingredients."
I added ammonia to one of the cups. The juice turned green. Did that mean it was acidic or basic?

What were we supposed to be writing down, again?

As my lab partner, Noel was usually Captain of the Pen, while I was usually Captain of the Beaker.

Where was Noel? Was he really going to ask to be my lab partner and then ditch class?

And why had he asked to be my lab partner, anyway? We had been lab partners last term. We were obviously going to be lab partners this term too. There was no need to write a note about it.

The Drano turned my cabbage juice blue.

"Later in the term we're doing the science of baking!" Fleischman continued. "Did you people know that chemical reactions are taking place constantly in your home ovens? In your very own blenders? It's fascinating, I promise you."

The plastic gloves felt hot on my hands and I was starting to sweat in the warm lab. I was nervous about seeing Noel.

Because Noel liked me.

Or at least, he once liked me.

And I liked him back, if liking someone means you want to touch him whenever he's sitting next to you and he makes you laugh and you find yourself thinking about him, like, when you're alone in the shower with the door locked. If liking someone means that whenever he's in a room with you, even an auditorium or the refectory, you know exactly where he is and what he's doing, like you've got Noel radar.


Last fall, Noel had asked if he could kiss me. I wanted to say yes and throw myself on top of him like a kissing lunatic--but there were a thousand reasons not to. It was very complicated. So I told him no.

After that incident of extreme awkwardness, we had settled into being lab partners and occasionally eating lunch together with other people; a semi-friendship that didn't involve e-mailing, calling, writing each other notes or hanging out after school. So far, it had worked out okay. I mean, I just tried not to think about him--and most of the time I managed it.

From the Hardcover edition.

Customer Reviews

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The Treasure Map of Boys: Noel, Jackson, Finn, Hutch--and me, Ruby Oliver: Ruby Oliver Series, Book 3 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 44 reviews.
melissas More than 1 year ago
I have been hooked on this series since The Boyfriend List. Ruby Oliver's high school drama is painted so realistically that any young woman can relate to her. The only difference is that you laugh at all the parts that Ruby wouldn't find funny, and want to cry in all the parts where she feels happy. As someone who had a teen experience similar to what she's going through, I thoroughly appreciate the opportunity to see it from another perspective. If there isn't a follow-up novel, I will be deeply depressed.
taleofnight on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
First of all, I might be the only one, but I really like the covers of these series. They portray the book well and are cute.I loved this book. This was the kind of book that just sucked me in and I didn't know what was going on around me. The book picks up after winter break Ruby's Junior year. She still has her two friends, Meghan and Nora, who help her with a school baking charity drive called Baby CHuBS.I love Ruby and her witty narration. She's easy to relate to, either if you're boy crazy, get anxiety/panic attacks, lost a boyfriend to a friend, lost friends, lost a job, or starting a new job. She goes through everything a teenager goes through, which is really refreshing to read about since not a lot of books have such a relatable character.Nora got on my nerves quite a bit, all though she had her moments of being a good friend, most of the time I just felt like she was friends with Rudy because she felt sorry for her. I like Meghan because she just tells you like it is and would sometimes make Ruby feel better for how she was feeling.What I really enjoyed was that I couldn't figure out what was going to happen with Rudy and the list of boys she had looking her way (or who she thought was). At some points I was wanting her to be with Nora's brothers, other times Noel. But at the end of the book, I was really proud of Ruby and how much she had grown since the first book.I love this series, and this book just made me love it more. I can't wait to read the next book.
pokylittlepuppy on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Oh this one you guys. Everyone.How bad does it hurt seeing Ruby have trouble. She is so mad and so trying. She's learned how to stick up for herself but that sometimes makes things worse. The fight at the zoo, and Nora still judging her, and every single time she dissolves into another panic attack, which get so much worse in this book I lost count.I love the Tate Boys Bake campaign. And the fight with the older girl, and the scene there at the bake sale. With Jackson, when she says what she thinks. I cried on the subway.The chapter titles are particularly good. And the emulsions. Am not super excited I caught the misspelling in Hilary Duff's name. (Not Hillary.) YA is a little perilous, I guess.In addition, I am tempted to try this "my therapist says you have to get me a really big dog" thing at home.
ShellyPYA on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Ruby Oliver is confused. After losing almost all her friends after a breakup, Ruby has decided to remain boyfriendless, but suddenly all these boys seem to be interested in her. Should she be with Jackson, her ex whose ex now hates her, Noel, who her best friend Nora is in love with, or any of the other guys that suddenly seem to be flirting with her? As her weekly therapy appointments reveal, nothing is as simple as it seems.
GirlwiththeBraids on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Getting smothered with kind words and confusing signals, Ruby Oliver doesn¿t know what to think of these boys. One¿s her ex-boyfriend, one¿s her secret crush, another is her best friend¿s brother, and the other is a sweet and gentle soccer player. It should be entertaining to watch as different guys try to catch her attention and own her heart, but for Ruby, it just gives her panic attacks and ex-best friends. I guess that¿s what you get for being yourself! Caught in the middle of love triangles and exploding science projects, Ruby has had enough. So her therapist tells her to make a treasure map of the relationships that you would like to have. There starts the other half of Ruby¿s journey through Junior year in high school.The Treasure Map of Boys is a book that won¿t get out. of. my. head. It¿s ¿ unforgettable! Ruby¿s story is one that has happened many times in real life, I¿m sure, but is the first to be put down on paper. That¿s one of the reasons it¿s so unique. Author E. Lockhart¿s writing isn¿t the most original but it still has it¿s charm. Most of the characters were enjoyable to the highest level and I liked reading how Ruby tried to choose between them: which ones she wants as friends and which ones she wants to be more than friends with. It¿s all realistic but at the same time, a little predictable.I felt bad that Ruby had so many so-called friends that stood by her, but were never actually true friends. I found them selfish and ¿ just plain mean! I didn¿t like them at all. But there were a few things that bothered me about Ruby herself. She jumps to unproven conclusions and she never exactly finds out the truth to her thoughts. Other than Ruby being a little feministic, I enjoyed the book enough to recommend it.Release date: July 2009Contains:*inappropriate touching and talk of nudity*sexual references*Christians portrayed as `annoying¿*brief strong language
Runa on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Treasure Map of Boys begins with a quick recap of events, not getting in the way of the story, but serving as a nice reminder. Ruby is as quirky a narrator as always, and I loved her typical engaging thoughts. Although not that much happens plotwise, Ruby's snarky narration is just awesome enough to keep my interest. I'm proud of how much Ruby has developed over the series, into the self-assured girl we see in this book, reminding me of Meg Cabot's Mia Thermopolis and her endless quest for self-actualization. I felt that the book had a solid ending that would have worked even as an ending to the series. It really felt like a complete work, though, unlike many books found in series, where they sometimes feel incomplete as individual works of fiction. On a different note, I think it is important for readers to realize and keep in mind through the reading that this is a work of fluff fiction, and should not be taken seriously. Ruby overexaggerates a lot, is completely obsessed with boys, and when it comes to it, leads a pretty shallow existence. Don't go into these books looking for a heavy read, go into them for a bit of relaxation and unwinding, a distraction from the busy realities of life. It's a cutesy story about a girl and her day-to-day relatable adventures. Ruby is one of those characters that I know I would hate in real life, but reading it from her perspective, getting her outlook makes me like her. I don't love her, but I see the reasons behind the actions and Ruby makes more sense as a person--as much sense as a fictional character can make. And isn't that what books are all about? A heightened sense of understanding about the world around us?Rating: 4.5/5
ericajsc on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
After reading the first two books in this series, I became a fan of Ruby Oliver; after reading this third book, I think she¿s my new hero. Ruby is a strong, smart, witty girl who has to navigate the minefield of small, private school where her reputation is less than desirable. Oh, and she¿s surrounded by cute yet frustratingly vague boys who may or may not want to date her. It can be a difficult thing to create a neurotic character who is quirky and lovable rather than whiny and loathsome, but Lockhart keeps Ruby in the loveable camp. In fact, were it not for her various neuroses, I¿d find her to be unrelatable and, quite frankly, I¿d probably hate her for being so desirable. This is, in fact, the issue most of the girls in her school have with her. But since the book is told from Ruby¿s point of view, the reader is able to see that she really is trying to be a good person, is actually trying to work through her issues.Throughout the book, Ruby faces situations that bring on panic attacks. In the middle of a panic attack at school, Ruby wonders, ¿If I had to be neurotic, couldn¿t I turn glamorously pale and faint into someone¿s arms and make him want to rescue me? Did I have to hyperventilate in an ugly coat and sit in the mud?¿ It is moments like this that flesh her out as a realistic teenager. Yes, she plans to get her fellow students to let go of their antiquated notions of masculinity, and she hates the idea that her friend Meghan wants to work on being in love by spring fling with an as-yet-undecided boy; but she¿s a normal teenage girl and she¿s still boy-crazy, even though she doesn¿t want to be. In this book, far more than the previous two, Ruby grasps what Dr. Z has been trying to get at for over a year. But Lockhart doesn¿t write it in a saccharine way. Although I had an idea of how things might end, Lockhart kept me guessing until the end.
stephxsu on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Now in the second half of her junior year, Ruby Oliver seems to have reached a sort of satisfying plateau in her social standing. No longer a social standing after the incident with the boyfriend list in sophomore year, Ruby now has several friends, of both genders¿but, alas, she still does not have a boyfriend!This is not to say that she doesn¿t have any prospects. A school bake sale she runs prompts several guys to participate, and to maybe show an interest in her. Roo also can¿t decide how she feels about her ex, Jackson, newly single after breaking up with Roo¿s ex-best friend, sending her more gifts and always hanging around her. And finally, she has trouble interpreting the actions of Noel, her friend and someone she may like.But then things get worse¿much worse. And suddenly Roo is back in a position of trying to figure out who her true friends are, and whether or not she is a good person after all.E. Lockhart¿s Ruby Oliver books are, quite simply, some of the best studies of high school platonic and romantic interaction that ever exist. What I love about Roo and the books about her are how thoroughly and realistically complex the characters are. Teens do a lot of crazy things in high school, and there are never easy explanations for their motivations. Similarly, Roo is constantly trying to analyze her behavior and decide whether she is being a normal teenage girl or a horrible person.This kind of three-dimensional psych study isn¿t just limited to Roo, however. All of the other people in Roo¿s life¿with the exception of the adults¿are prime candidates for loads of discussion. What makes them do what they do? Are they right to put so much blame on Roo for things going badly, or are they themselves also partially at fault? All the questions that teens subconsciously must answer in high school, and yet rarely have the ability to voice as clearly as Roo does.The excellence doesn¿t stop there, either! E. Lockhart not only creates wonderful characters, she also writes humorously. Roo has a habit of using footnotes liberally to either go off on tangents that usually involve cinema knowledge or to make a funny and/or informative note. The result is a book that is easy yet fun to read.Due to E. Lockhart¿s insightful observation about the behaviors of teenagers in a small school, as well as Roo¿s admittedly dramatic life, the Ruby Oliver books would make great presents for teen girls who read a lot of manga but not many actual novels. The situations involving friends and love interests will be familiar to them, and the language will be accessible and enticing. And at the same time, there are plenty of smarts in this book to win anyone¿s heart. If you want to relive those painful high school years of confusing and crazy emotions, this is a great series to pick up.
heike6 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
When you stop looking for love and start appreciating what you've got, that's when you'll find love. A great follow-up to the other two Ruby Oliver books, which I enjoyed. The main character has a very unique yet utterly familiar voice that almost any heterosexual female can identify with. It's about how we get obsessed with things (boys) and think we're crazy, only to find out that we're actually normal. It's also about friendships, and which ones are worthwhile. I completely agree with Ruby's likening friendship to the unconditional love of a dog. If it isn't there, why bother?
TheBookCellar on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This was a really cute book. It would be a really good read for just lounging around reading on a summer day or something. It's not a real complicated plot so it was easy to get (which was good, as I hadn't read the previous 2 Ruby Oliver books). Ruby's character was really fun and tries to do the best. You can't help but to love her through all the things she does!
evet on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Third in a series and really fun to read. Great sense of humor. Did think the parents, especially the mother, were caricatures rather than realistically developed characters, but that is a small criticism.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I did not mean to call you your real name.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The Treasure Map of Boys is a excellent book! It is filled with everyday drama but still has that Ruby Oliver touch. Here is a quick summary: Ruby is still seeing her "shrink" and he still has a major crush on Noel. She later finds out her old boyfriend, Jackson broke up with her ex-friend Kim. The book has serious romance, funny friendships, and a lot of heartbreak. I would reccomend this book to anybody who is interested in a book that is made for loving and laughing!!
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Madison Sangster More than 1 year ago
Is this the second or third book in the bofriend list seris? I read the biyfriend list but i dont know which one to read next. HELP!!!!!
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Savannah Newbern More than 1 year ago
amazing, as always. ruby oliver had me from day 1 all the way back in the boyfriend list
dholland08 More than 1 year ago
The Treasure Map of Boys was as hilarious and meticulously plotted as its predecessors, The Boyfriend List and The Boy Book. Once again Ruby Oliver's quirky, hilarious voice shone through to narrate this tale ridden with teenage angst. I don't think anyone captures the high school experience better than E. Lockhart. She is right up there with Meg Cabot and Sarah Dessen. The Treasure Map of Boys begins after winter break of Roo's junior year. The relative stability Roo established at the end of The Boy Book is soon gone when Ruby finds herself -running a bake sale when she can't bake -encouraging Nora to go after Noel when she likes Noel -dealing with Jackson and Kim having split -dealing with Jackson's sudden interest in her -with Nora's college student brother Gideon once more becoming a part of her life. This time the story centers around Roo's therapy assignment of making a treasure map of the peer relationships in her life and what she wants them to be. Roo makes it a treasure map of all the boys in her life, with surprising and hilarious results. Ruby is a character I love and who feels like a close friend. Whether she's defending animal rights, falling in love, or making good or bad choices I was rooting for her. Once again, Ruby's foot notes added a fresh commentary to the bottom of many of the pages and had me laughing out loud. That is part of Lockhart's gift: she can take serious issues of adolesence and life and make them funny. This book was a joy to read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
so this is definitely a fun book to read. i was always looking forward to reading it and never felt like i had to force myself to read it. i love all the drama that goes on with her boyfriend(s) and her so-called friends. and her parents are pretty hilarious. i like the setting, which is washington and she lives in a boat house, which is pretty cool.