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Friday, February 26, 2010

Book Review: A Match Made in High School by Kristin Walker

Reading level: Young Adult
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Razorbill (February 4, 2010)
Language: English

When the principal announces that every senior must participate in a mandatory year-long Marriage Education program, Fiona Sheehan believes that her life can’t get any worse. Then she marries her “husband”: Jerky jock Todd, whose cheerleader girlfriend, Amanda, has had it in for Fiona since day one of second grade. Even worse? Amanda is paired with Fiona’s long-term crush, Gabe. At least Fiona is doing better than her best friend, Marcie, who is paired up with the very quiet, very mysterious Johnny Mercer. Pranks, fights, misunderstandings, and reconciliations ensue in an almost Shakespearean comedy of errors about mistaken first impressions, convoluted coupling, and hidden crushes.

Think back to when you were in high school. Now imagine that you were paired up with someone you truly detested in your school's groundbreaking (and mandatory) Marriage Education Program. There's no way to get out of this class and you must resign yourself to making your “marriage work”. Sounds like a recipe for disaster right?

This is the premise for A Match Made in High School, the hilarious debut novel from Kristin Walker. First we meet the players. Fiona is the snarky, lovable girl we all can relate to. Instead of getting paired up with Gabe, her dream guy, she gets stuck with mean spirited Todd. Best friend Marcie gets matched up with quiet guy Johnny Mercer. And lastly, Gabe gets Amanda, Todd’s beautiful and shallow girlfriend. From that point on, the madness ensues and we are entertained with amusing pranks, realizations and oodles of twists and turns. Will Fiona and her “husband” ever get along? Well you’ll have to just pick up the book and find out for yourself!

I had high expectations for Match Made in High School and I’m happy to say I wasn’t disappointed. It was a fast-paced romp with some great underlying messages for teens. Stereotypes can be so limiting – writing people off based on a glance at their exterior shell can really cause you to miss out on some great connections. The characters were engaging, and I enjoyed reading along with Fiona as she navigated her relationship with Todd. One of the best aspects for me was that the story never turned to easy cliches. Fiona and Todd evolved a lot throughout the book and their relationship kept me turning the pages with surprise and delight.

Purchase A Match Made In High School HERE.

Kristin Walker has been writing for teens and children for several years. Her fiction and poetry have appeared or are forthcoming in magazines such as Ladybug and Wee Ones, and her essays can be found in two Chicken Soup for the Soul books. She lives in a Chicago suburb with her husband and three sons. A Match Made in High School is her first novel.


Michelle said...

I agree, this book was soo great! :)


Very cute review, I need to pick a copy up asap!

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

Looks fun. Everyone is just raving about this one.

Bookalicious Ramblings said...

Oh, this book was so much fun to read! Great review! :D

Jennie Smith said...

I have this one on my list... I need to go get it very quickly! Great review!