From School Library Journal
Grade 9 Up-Jenny Humphrey, kicked out of Constance Ballard prep school for being a bad influence, decides she'll do anything to become one of the popular girls at Waverly Academy. Like the author's Gossip Girls series, the story is full of underage drinking, smoking, foul language, snarkiness, and label dropping. Sleeping around is casually accepted. Jenny rooms with two almost interchangeable big names on campus: Brett, who falls for the uber-rich newbie teacher, and Callie, who manipulates both Jenny and her boyfriend, Easy. The two girls are barely speaking because each one blames the other for their friend Tinsley's expulsion. Fearing that she will also be kicked out, Callie talks vulnerable Jenny into taking the blame when Easy gets caught nearly naked in their room. But Jenny is as attracted to Easy as he is to her. The school's dirty little secret is that you can get away with almost anything as long as you are from a legacy family of donors, which may explain why Tinsley is being reinstated at the books' end-just in time for a sequel. Jenny's references to Old and New Jenny are more confusing than illuminating as is the starry-eyed innocence that uncharacteristically peeks out of her persona at convenient times. Pass on this paean to possessions, perkiness, and ample breasts for something more substantial, unless you have insatiable Gossip Girl fans.-Tina Zubak, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, PA
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Gr. 9-12. This first title in the It Girl series, a spin-off of the Gossip Girl books, follows sophomore Jenny Humphrey to Waverly Academy, an exclusive boarding school in upstate New York. As new girl on campus, Jenny relishes the idea that she can leave behind her somewhat tarnished reputation, earned during her freshman year in New York City. She is put in the same room as the school's queen bees, Callie and Brett, and soon finds herself caught up in a scandal that involves Callie's nearly naked boyfriend on Jenny's bed. Although this contains many of the elements that make the Gossip Girl series such addictive reading, the writing lacks punch. In the Gossip Girl books, an anonymous narrator contributes e-mails that bind the story together with deliciously catty previews and overviews of the plot. Here, e-mails from different characters further splinter the multivoiced narrative. Still, that won't stop fans from happily digging into a new adventure in conspicuous consumption and name-dropping. Debbie CartonCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved