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Rahul Kanakia. Hyperion, $17.99 (352p) ISBN 978-1-4847-2387-6
Reshma Kapoor will do anything to ensure her spot as valedictorian, including suing her school for changing its grading policy just prior to her senior year. The lawsuit—and Reshma’s subsequent op-ed in the Huffington Post, “Double Standards for Asian Students”—lead her to sign with a literary agent, Linda Montrose, telling her that she has been working on a YA novel (which she has not). Like Linda, who believes the diary-like manuscript Reshma assembles is fictional, readers will easily fall for debut author Kanakia’s heroine, even when she’s at her most ruthless or misguided. When Reshma realizes that a good book needs romance and friendship, she approaches these hurdles in her typically calculating way: she blackmails Alex (a classmate who has been selling her Adderall) into being her best friend and starts making romantic overtures toward another student, Aakash. Kanakia’s mordantly funny story of an overachiever who takes “write what you know” to new extremes will give college-bound readers (and their parents) a gentle wake-up call that success can come in a variety of forms. Ages 14–up. Agent: John Cusick, Folio Literary Management. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 05/16/2016
Release date: 08/02/2016
Paperback - 352 pages - 978-1-4847-3406-3
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