Oh, how I wish this book had been around when I was in high school, or at the very least, this TYPE of book. Alas, it was not to be, so I relieve the high school angst by reading about other people's.
This is the type of book that I related to on so many levels. Like Elise, I was kind of a freak in high school. I tried SO hard to fly under the radar, but I endured bullying nearly every day. It got so bad from two guys in particular, that my dad had to get involved and very nearly got the police involved. I was a target, pure and simple. I was shy, didn't have many friends (thank heavens for Rachelle and Kim - my only two really close friends in those days!), and didn't know how to stand up for myself. Reading about Elise's struggles to fit in hit so close to home. It was almost painful!
(As an aside, I have to share one experience that happened about 9 years ago, down at BYU, where I was employed at the time: I ran into a high school classmate who'd been the super-popular type. I thought that it would be the polite thing to say hello, and so I did. She actually looked me up and down and said, "Like I'd ever associate with you" and started to walk off. But before she really got too far away, she had to take a parting shot with this doozy: "I see you've let yourself kind of go. Too bad." That was it for me. I may have been a pushover in high school, but that girl doesn't exist anymore. I can SO stand up for myself now. I came back with, "Maybe so, but that's something I can change, whereas you'll always be a bitch." Honestly, I'm kind of proud of myself. As another aside, we just had our 20-year class reunion, and NO, I did not go. Never will.)
So now you know why this book resonated so deeply with me and why I liked it so much. I know her pain! I've been there! I really enjoyed seeing her blossom and find her niche, even when things seemed like they weren't going to work. Loved how it all played out. SUCH a great book. Seriously, if you ever experienced high school pain, READ THIS.