Who’s That Girl?
Blair Thornburgh. HarperTeen, $17.99 (400p) ISBN 978-0-06-244777-7
Nattie and her friends all belong to their suburban Philadelphia prep school’s small gay-straight alliance, aka the OWLALGBTQIA; they aren’t persecuted or harassed—that would require being noticed. But that’s just fine with junior Nattie, best friend/club founder Tess, and the two Zachs, one gay, one straight. Then the much cooler Sebastian Delacroix—already graduated, and fronting a band that’s getting airplay—writes a song that might be about Nattie. They had a moment once, and he texts her occasionally, but does he like her? And what about the infinitely patient “Zach the Anarchist” (actually a vegetarian liberal)? Does he want more than friendship? Nattie would like to keep the Sebastian part of her life separate, but this proves increasingly impossible as the alliance struggles to sponsor a school dance that the popular kids will attend. Although the story can skew a bit too cute, debut author Thornburgh thoughtfully charts the tensions and loyalties among a solid group of friends. Rom-com-savvy readers won’t be surprised by how things turn out, but getting there makes for sweetly offbeat and entertaining reading. Ages 13–up. Agent: Uwe Stender, Triada U.S. Literary. (July)
Reviewed on: 05/08/2017