The Alpha Bet

Stephanie Hale, Author . Flux $9.95 (233p) ISBN 978-0-7387-1574-2

Starting college early at age 16 isn't easy, but Grace Kelly Cook—who's as socially challenged and klutzy as her namesake was glamorous—is still excited. This is her chance to escape her overbearing mother, embrace the studies she loves, and work on her social life (her mother's fears about sending Grace Kelly to school aren't allayed when they walk in on her free-spirited roommate, Jentry, having sex on move-in day). Grace Kelly and Jentry become fast friends and pledge the Alphas, the best sorority on campus. Grace Kelly gets into scrapes as she fulfills the alphabetical tasks required to join the Alphas, which bring her closer to her love interest and make an enemy out of a fellow pledge. Considering her smarts, Grace Kelly's naïveté is sometimes hard to swallow (she's dreamed about attending McMillan College for years, yet doesn't know what a sorority is), but she's a likable protagonist who learns to recognize the value of friendship, sisterhood, and being herself—even coming to appreciate her mother—in a conclusion that is perhaps too tidy but nonetheless satisfying. Ages 12–up. (Apr.)

Reviewed on: 04/19/2010
Release date: 04/01/2010
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