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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on July 10, 2012
This book is FUNNY. Like, absurdly funny.

Evidence via first line:
"At the end of July, back when I was still fun, I bought Vicks two tufts of fake armpit hair from Jokes-a-Plenty."

And though the characters were strong, the plotting tight, and the narration nearly seamless, what really stood out was the dialogue. The conversations between these three girls flowed with such a natural and ridiculous certainty that I felt like I was listening in on a conversation I had with my friends in high school. (Though we never had to escape an alligator.) There were almost no one-liners; the humor came from the characters themselves, and the dialogue built upon itself to create that wonderful realism. This book nails the nuances of friendship.

The best part of HOW TO BE BAD?

It's a ball to read. It regularly touches on serious topics (as per the jacket copy, every girl has her issues), but it didn't weigh me down with them. Instead, I had a great time with Jesse, Vicks, and Mel as they drove to Miami. And here's the kicker ---- I am personally biased against road trip novels. I just feel they're cliche or something. Way to bust that particular prejudice.

Conclusion: If you're sitting at home bored and want an adventure with your friends but it's kinda not happening... read this book. It's almost as good as being there.

* This review posted originally at www(dot)FirstNovelsClub(dot)com
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on January 21, 2012
I bought this book because I have read everything that e. lockhart has written. I absolutely love her books. This was wonderful as well. The chapters rotate between three teenage girls' perspectives. They are each dealing with their own issues, and it was fun to read all the perspectives. I would recommend this book if you enjoy realistic YA fiction.
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There’s something about summer that makes me crave light, fun reads about friendship, love and good times so when I spotted HOW TO BE BAD with that awesome cover, I knew it was just what I needed.

Despite the issues that can arise with multiple POVs, I adore getting to know a variety of characters intimately and feel that I can get so much more out of my reading experience. HOW TO BE BAD is written by three different authors, each taking a character which really excited me because of the added authenticity of each of the characters’ different personalities and stories.

Set in Florida, HOW TO BE BAD takes place at the end of another hot, sticky summer. Jesse, Vicks and Mel all work at the Waffle House and couldn’t be more different. Jesse lives in a trailer park with her mom who has just been diagnosed with cancer and Jesse clings to the Christian beliefs passed down by her Grandma as a way of comforting her through her fear of the unknown. Her best friend, Vicks has recently said goodbye to her boyfriend, Brady a freshman at college in Miami who has suddenly forgotten how to use the phone and Vicks is determined not to be one of “those girlfriends” obsessing over the wording in every little text. Mel, the new girl is desperate to fit in to her new home which couldn’t be more different than the Canadian landscape she left behind. When a suggested road trip to Miami is suggested, the three girls are thrown together for a weekend of discovery, heartbreak, healing and friendship that will change their outlook on life forever.

HOW TO BE BAD is the quintessential, light fluffy read that will capture your attention easily. Written in a fresh and authentic style, it captures the essence of female teen friendships, the idea of the seemingly endless summer and the adolescent panic of what’s lurking around the corner as Jesse, Vicks and Mel contend with the idea that independence with all its advantages and hardships is looming fast and that it’s not always a good thing.

Witty and fun with real emotion at its heart, HOW TO BE BAD is a pacy read that I enjoyed picking up and could get easily absorbed in no matter where I was. Each of the girls had realistic, distinctive voices and I felt the authors really captured their individual characteristics perfectly. My favourite character kept changing because of this and we really saw all sides to these girls – their kind hearts, infuriating habits and myriad of opinions.

Jesse was the most contentious and difficult to like at first. Honestly I felt her character was the most stereotypical especially with regards to her Christian values which I felt was a missed opportunity to show that not all Christians are narrow-minded, up-tight and all about wrath and hell-fire as it usually depicted in so many books. It was the one gripe I had with the book but honestly it turned out to be minor as Jesse showed some real growth throughout the book and I could understand the fear and uncertainty she was dealing with. Vicks is typically impulsive especially when she lets her emotions get the best of her which leads to a wide variety of hilarious situations and her character ensured the plot never lulled. Mel was my favourite character, by far. Sweet and uncertain, I loved how each situation pushed her further out of her comfort zone and how her confidence grew as the girls fought, laughed, made up and forged real bonds on the road.

Entertaining, light-hearted and the perfect addition to your Summer TBR, HOW TO BE BAD left me with a smile on my face and a yearning for my own little road-trip!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 25, 2011
I love books with 2 or more different character view's. What is so awesome about this book is the book is told from 3 different point of views and 3 different authors.
Wonderful book, I recommend this book to anyone who loves an adventure!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on July 6, 2012
Best friends, Jess and Vicks, aren't clicking like they use to, so Jess has a plan that will bring her and Vicks close again - a road trip to see Vicks's boyfriend, Brady, who is at University. There's only one issue, they don't have enough money to fund the trip. Enter Mel, the new girl. Mel volunteers to help them fund the trip as long as they take her along with them, much to Jess's dismay. What follows is a hilarious and endearing tale of friendship and love with a couple of crocodiles. Lauren Myracle writes as Jess, E. Lockhart as Vicks and Sarah Mlynowski as Mel.

I absolutely loved the characters in this book. Jess, Vicks and Mel are all well fleshed out and relatable. Since each character is written by a different author, each voice is very distinct, yet, the story is cohesive. In the beginning, I was a little skeptical at how Mel would have fit in - what exactly was her story and why was she so keen on hanging with Jess and Vicks? How to be Bad explores these friendships, the road trip serving to bring out the good and the bad in each of them. For these girls, the trip is definitely about the journey, not just the destination.

While it's light and fun, How to be Bad has a lot of depth to it, walking a balance between hilarious and serious. It's a heartwarming story of the love of friends. I love the character growth, it made the book feel more like someone's diary than the imaginations of three authors. I'm definitely looking forward to seeing more from these ladies and hopefully their future work together.
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on September 18, 2009
"How to Be Bad" is a collaborative effort of three YA authors out of which I am familiar with only one - E. Lockhart. In fact, her name on the cover was the only reason I picked up this book.

This is a story of three girls: Jesse - a strong willed and opinionated Christian with an air of trailer trashiness about her who just found out her mother has cancer; Vicks - a tomboyish and independednt amazon whose boyfriend recently started college and hasn't called her in two weeks; Mel - an insecure rich girl who just moved from Canada and struggles to find real friends. The girls take a weekend trip down to Florida during which they fight, make mistakes, test their friendships and ultimately come to better understand themselves and each other.

This book was an interesting enough read, it kept me engaged from the beginning till the end. There were some touching and sweet moments, but overall there was nothing new or special about this book. The theme has been successfully explored by other writers and the writing itself wasn't that memorable either. The book was written from 3 girls' POV. While in the beginning I was able to easily distinguish the "voices" of the narrators, by the end all 3 blended together. Not sure what exactly happened. Either one of the authors ended up writing the bulk of the book (and I am sure it wasn't E.Lockhart, I know she can do better than that) or it was heavily edited. Either way, it didn't work as well as it could have. Overall, a decent read, but not really memorable
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on January 3, 2015
Fun, well-written, good storytelling and believable characters! I'd love a sequel!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on June 10, 2015
The whole story was disappointing. The way the characters interact do not seem real at all. Every character was annoying and the only part I enjoyed was the part with Old Joe. I'm disappointed that I paid $10 for this. I would not recommend this book even if you recieved it for free.
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