The Real Prom Queens of Westfield High

Laurie Boyle Crompton. Sourcebooks Fire, $8.99 trade paper (320p) ISBN 978-1-4022-7346-9
Crompton’s (Blaze) fun premise is built around a reality show that aims to transform high school outcasts into pretty, poised, and potentially popular girls. If one of the three contestants can nab the ultimate prize—being named prom queen during a live telecast—she will win one million dollars. Shannon Depola agrees to participate, hoping to improve her reputation after an embarrassing incident made her the target of name-calling and harassment. After Prom Queen Camp, Shannon has a great new look, but while listening closely to her Social Advisement Coach may win her the crown, it could cost her the people she cares about. Shannon struts down a fairly predictable path that leads to some newfound insights (“I just really wanted to escape my life for a while”) and a live prom full of over-the-top mayhem. While readers won’t find many surprises, and the novel’s cultural critique is mild, its outrageous moments reveal how far the show’s producers will go to shape the reality they want. Ages 13–up. Agent: Ammi-Joan Paquette, Erin Murphy Literary Agency. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 12/16/2013
Release date: 02/04/2014
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