From School Library Journal
Grade 8–10—High school senior Kevin Mopsely holds the first-chair flute position in the school band and has a knack for alienating pretty girls. So it comes as a huge surprise to everyone when überjock and alpha male Brandon Trent appoints him to an important role in the Graduation Rituals. Kevin's been made the compiler of the Book of Busts, a notebook that purports to contain years of measurements of every girl in every graduating class. On one level, he is thrilled to find himself in a previously unreachable echelon of high school society, but as the son of a women's studies professor, he knows that it's wrong to treat his female classmates so disrespectfully, especially as he finds himself falling for his sweet, smart, funny best friend, Abby. This novel begins on a high note in the opening chapter, as John uses a light and humorous touch to delineate the friendship between geeks-of-a-feather Kevin and Abby. The rest of the novel is far less satisfying, however; the author's depiction of an American high school rings false in almost every respect, and the characters are flat, stereotyped, and, except where it serves the machinations of the plot, one-dimensional. The message about feminism and respect between the sexes is certainly a valuable one, but teens will be turned off by the plot's too-obvious lessons and moralizing tone.—Meredith Robbins, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis High School, New York City
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About the Author
Antony John (Seattle) was born in England and raised on a balanced diet of fish and chips, obscure British comedies, and ABBA's greatest hits. In a pique of teenage rebellion, he decided to pursue a career in classical music, culminating in a BA from Oxford University and a Ph.D. from Duke University.