cover image Kill the Boy Band

Kill the Boy Band

Goldy Moldavsky. Scholastic/Point, $17.99 (320p) ISBN 978-0-545-86747-4

Moldavsky's debut is a dark-humored, tongue-in-cheek novel with elements of noir. Teenagers Isabel, Apple, Erin, and an unnamed narrator have an intense friendship formed around their shared adoration of a British boy band, the Ruperts. Proud to call themselves "Strepurs" (Ruperts spelled backward), they follow the boys everywhere, hoping to catch a glimpse of them, even reserving a hotel room where they are staying. There, the girls come "to be in possession of [their] very own boy bander," when Apple tackles a Rupert (the "Ugly One") on her way to get ice, knocks him out cold, and drags him into their room. References to fanfiction and "feels" place the story firmly in the present, though boy band mania is far from a new phenomenon. A late revelation throws the circumstances into a different light, yet sympathizing with the protagonists isn't really the point. The story's strength is in its bitingly satirical look at the extremes of fandom and how reality can be an unwelcome intrusion into carefully constructed fantasy worlds. Ages 14%E2%80%93up. Agent: Jenny Bent, Bent Agency. (Feb.)