cover image Tall, Thin, and Blonde

Tall, Thin, and Blonde

Dyan Sheldon. Candlewick Press (MA), $15.95 (176pp) ISBN 978-1-56402-139-7

Jenny and Amy's longtime friendship begins to unravel soon after the girls begin high school. Much to aspiring astrophysicist Jenny's dismay and astonishment, level-headed Amy starts hanging around with cheerleaders, highlights her hair and gives up competitive swimming (``it makes your calves so thick''). Jenny is left to find what solace she can in the company of eccentric, bean-sprout-munching Marva and her gang of misfit girls. Stories that involve an outsider's struggles with a clique of popular kids will always intrigue a certain segment of the YA audience. Here, however, the irresistibly gossipy spark that illuminates these tales is nearly extinguished by the confused storytelling (including a trite anti-dissection subplot) and stock characters. Ages 11-15. (Oct.)