This is a 2009 Printz Honor recipient AND it is set in a boarding school, and yet it took me this long to get around to reading it. I had actually started it way last year and didn’t get into it and stopped. Happily this time I got into it more easily (which just goes to show that sometimes it’s not the book, it’s you and your circumstances) and was able to enjoy all the boarding school shenanigans I expected:
Sneaking out to meet a boy? Check
Sneaking out to drink in an unusual location? Check
Scenes set in the dining hall? Check
Details of chapel and unusual electives not offered at normal schools? Check
Details of weird school traditions, often involving statues/portraits? Check
Pranks? Check, check, and check!
I did find Frankie a bit unrelatable–she is going to an elite boarding school, she is super smart but clearly doesn’t work at it, and she finds herself with a fantastic figure. However, she likes playing with words in a funny way that I liked and she is clever and determined. Her father was a party of a secret society when he attended the school many years ago and Frankie’s new boyfriend (who is totally unlikable) is in it, too. Frankie is determined to find a missing book that tells all about the society and use it to make her own mark upon the school and the society.
I thought all the pranks were exceptionally clever and loved reading about them. I was mildly disappointed in the ending because I feel like the other characters did not appreciate all the things I did about Frankie. That said, this is a good one to add to the “good boarding school books” list!