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Queen Bee Paperback – September 1, 2005

12 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This bubbly, fun and smart new series is the second big release from Scholastic's Graphix imprint. Clugston, well-known for her edgy and stylish Blue Monday and Scooter Girl, has done it again in this stinging portrayal of popularity battles between beautiful middle-schoolers. Haley, the new girl, is determined to be popular and, in spite of the occasional gaffe resulting from her runaway psychokinetic powers, she succeeds. When an even newer girl shows up to challenge her new role as queen bee, it turns out that she possesses the same powers as Haley, and the battle begins. Energetic drawings and the girl-against-girl conflict recall the teen dramas of Archie, Betty and Veronica, while the climactic musical face-off carries off its Josie and the Pussycats homage with flair. Direct references to the best of the modern-day teen genre spice up the story, pointing out that Queen Bee is right at home alongside Heathers and Mean Girls. Clugston knows how mean girls can really be; her dialogue bristles with barbed rejoinders and she never glosses over the true nastiness of the girl fight. Everything works in this funny, charming and true story, right down to the closing mystery of why Alexa and Haley look so much alike. (Aug.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From School Library Journal

Grade 6-8– Like most middle-school girls, Haley Madison is obsessed with popularity. When she transfers to a new school, she finally has a fresh start–if she can keep her pesky psychokinesis under control–no more exploding lunch trays, no more embarrassing baseball incidents. Her first day, she befriends Trini, who is nice but certainly not popular. Haley works her way up the social ladder with fake laughs and manipulation. Then, beautiful Alexa shows up. She's campaigning to be the new queen bee and she shares Haley's powers. A spectacular face-off ensues at a talent show. Although the story ends predictably, readers will relate to both girls. The panel illustrations effectively use black space to frame the characters' often-jealous emotions. Haley's maybe boyfriend sports a spiky haircut and a London Calling T-shirt. He's a nice change from the typical prince love interest. As to be expected, the characters constantly drop pop-culture references. This book will be popular with fans of the author's Blue Monday series (Oni Pr.).–Sadie Mattox, DeKalb County Public Library, Decatur, GA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 9 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 4 - 7
  • Paperback: 112 pages
  • Publisher: GRAPHIX; English Language edition (September 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0439709873
  • ISBN-13: 978-0439709873
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 0.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,770,375 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Miss Jennifer on March 2, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Similar to "Mean Girls", this is a story about cliques, popularity, and how nasty girls can be. Haley Madison is moving to a new school and is determined not to be the geek she was in her old middle school. She succeeds in joining the "Bee Hive", the popular girl group at school, with only minor problems in controlling her special psychokinetic powers. But soon another new girl arrives, coincidentally with the same psychokinetic powers, and then the power struggle begins since there is only room for one new girl in the Bee Hive. The climax of the story occurs during a talent contest reminiscent of "American Idol". The book ends on a happy note and gives a hint as to why the two girls both have the same powers. A sequel is almost guaranteed. The book is in graphic novel format and reminded me more of the "Archie" comics rather than Japanese manga. The drawings are excellent; the story is full of energy and moves along at a brisk pace. There are numerous references to recent pop culture that readers will recognize. I would recommend this to those that have graphic novel collections and to middle school girls.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Been there on March 10, 2012
Format: Paperback
When I first read this book at age ten, I loved it.

The story was full of mean-girls-esque hilarity and well done artwork. The only criticism of the plot I've ever had of the book, is that it seems much more like high school than the middle school which it claims to be about.

I couldn't wait for the sequel, which the book seemed to make clear (through MANY hints) was going to happen.

But Volume 2 never came out.

Now, 7 years have passed since the book was published, its doubtful the series- excuse me- book will ever continue.

The bottom line? You should totally get Queen Bee. It's a great book for both kids and adults, and at this price, it's a steal. But be warned, don't get too attached to the characters, because you won't see them any time soon.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Selo on April 22, 2007
Format: Paperback
Young girl drama is nothing new to artist and writer Chynna Clugston-Major, whose other works include Blue Monday and Scooter Girl, she puts even more of a twist on Queen Bee, for it focuses even more on the school setting than it does on the psychic powers of the series' two leading ladies, Haley Madison and Alexa Harmon.

Schoolyard bullies, adolescent crushes, talent shows, cliques, and girls lusting after popularity are all present, as well as mandatory scenes with kids grumbling about homework. The story focuses on former class loser Haley, who has just moved to JFK Intermediate, has set her mind on being the most well-known kid in the school to clear her name--by joining the Hive, the most popular group of girls there and, unbeknownst to Haley, also the most venomous backstabbers there are. But controlling her psychokinesis, the power to move objects with her mind, is part of the challenge she faces, and that lack of control is exactly what made her hated and avoided at her old school.

For what content she can get away with in a story aimed at tweens, Clugston perfectly renders just how nasty seventh graders can be. Once Haley gets into the Hive, her new posse of supposed friends are revealed to be selfish brats that thrive on getting designer clothing before everyone else and making the unpopular kids suffer. When a new girl named Alexa comes who also has psychokinesis and threatens to overthrow Haley's popularity, which triggers an unpleasant and unfair feud between the two. Eventually, the only way to settle the rivalry between them is for Haley to beat Alexa at the upcoming "A-Mer-I-Can Dream" schoolwide talent competition.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on October 21, 2005
Format: Paperback
I read this book right after I got it. IT ROCKS! Anyway, its about a girl named Haley and she found out she has powers!Then, one day a girl named ALEXA came into her classroom and suddenly they combined powers! Alexa however is aka (EVIL) !!! once you read this book you will want to read more !!!*
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Format: Paperback
Chynna Clugston’s never been shy about acknowledging her pop culture inspirations and interests, and in Queen Bee, it’s no different. During the talent competition, lead character Haley sings The Go-Go’s “We’ve Got the Beat”. When trying to figure out how to be popular, Haley watches classic teen movies from the 80s and today. Clugston also mentions Mean Girls a couple of times, which given how similar the plot is, may be too often.

Haley is psychokinetic — she can move things with her mind. She’s always been an outcast, so when her mother moves them to the big city, Haley sees her new school as her chance to be popular. She studies up, gets new clothes, and practices being cool. A nice girl named Trini shows her around and introduces her to the cliques in a scene you’ve seen before if you’ve ever watched any teen movie.

Since this is intended to be a series of graphic novels [although no more ever appeared], we’re introduced to a set of interesting girl characters, Trini’s friends, that promptly disappear from this volume. Instead, Haley’s conflict comes with the jealousy of one of the already popular girls. That’s another plot element that gets truncated strangely, with their competition being a problem and then suddenly not.

The main story begins when Alexa shows up. She has powers similar to Haley’s, but she’s more experienced with them. She quickly takes Haley’s place among the popular girls, which undercuts the ultimate message of the book. If Haley’s meant to learn that there are more important things than being popular — like honesty and trust — then why spend so much of the book setting up a situation where we’re supposed to root for her to get the better of Alexa?
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