From School Library Journal
Grade 10 Up—Meet Very (short for Veronica) LeFreak (from the disco-era song of the same name—"C'est Chic!"), a modern party girl with eclectic musical tastes. She is 100 percent plugged in to her electronic life as a freshman at Columbia University and not quite so attached to mundane concerns like going to class and managing her finances. Famous on campus for her creation of "The Grid," an online dorm social-networking site, and for organizing off-kilter flash-mob events and killer parties, Very skids from coasting to possible expulsion and scholarship loss. Brian, a best bud, until she sleeps with him; Jennifer, the roommate Very insists on calling Lavinia; and an irate RA stage an intervention at the behest of the dean. Very needs to go cold turkey and give up her total reliance on electronics. No iPod, no iPhone, no laptop. And that means no searching for her missing online crush. After things turn even uglier, the second half of Very's story takes place at a 28-day ESCAPE (Emergency Services for Computer-Addicted Persons) program at a former fat farm in Vermont. There, Very will have to learn to sink or swim after her forced break from technology. With the quiet blaring, she might have the time to figure out a future, or she just might go so crazy that she falls off the wagon into an untenable virtual existence with emoticons in place of relationships. Very's unique take on the world brings plenty of humor and a vicarious ride through racy modern college life.—Suzanne Gordon, Peachtree Ridge High School, Suwanee, GA
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It’s the second semester of freshman year for Very (short for Veronica) at New York’s Columbia University, and things are either going splendidly or catastrophically, depending on who you ask. Self-described as “a freak and a slut and a very bad student,” Very is the bisexual queen of campus, creator of the Grid (a wildly popular underground student-body networking site), and organizer of flash mobs and parties that are as legendary as they are illegal. Her imminent flunking out has to do with her inability to concentrate—why would she listen to her professor when she could be iTunes-ing, instant messaging, or meme-ing? Cohn creates a wondrous, sometimes breathtaking character with Very, a wholly believable modern-day multitasker who is unabashedly sexual. That’s why the second half of the book is something of a disappointment: Very is entered into a tech-rehab facility, wherein too-easy psychoanalysis makes rote what was so fabulously free. Teens who identify with the protagonist may feel betrayed by the switcheroo, though their admiration for the engrossing character will not ebb. Grades 10-12. --Daniel Kraus