Pretty in Punxsutawaney

img_20190422_154332img_20190422_161144The book cover’s byline that says “wake up. go to school. fall in love. repeat” cleverly introduces the plot of this story.  Andie is a new girl in town, having moved to Punxsutawaney the summer before her senior year of high school. She spends lots of time at the movie theater, since movies are the biggest connection between Andie and her mother (a clever form of communication and understanding for this endearing mother and daughter relationship). Colton is the dreamy guy working at the theater (and possibly the real reason Andie spends so much time there).

Colton offers to pick up Andie early on the first day of school to show her around.  Andie’s mom interprets it as a first date and helps Andie pick out just the right thing to wear from a pile of thrift store finds–something to make a memorable ‘new girl’ statement. Andie tries on a pink polka-dot dress, then ends up falling asleep wearing the dress while watching the movie “Pretty in Pink.” Of all things to happen on that first day of school, Andie oversleeps.  When Colton comes to pick her up, she is still wearing the polka dot dress.  Once at school, almost everything goes wrong, especially the stares and snickers from different groups of students seeing the new red-haired girl in a PINK polka-dot dress. The only ones who seem to accept her at face value are the funny kids wearing their own costume-like outfits.  As for herself, all Andie wants is for Colton to adore her and give her her first kiss!

The next day Andie wakes up and chooses jeans and a tee shirt to wear. Again, Colton picks her up and everything happens just like it did the previous day: same kids in their groups, same Goth boy bumps into Andie, same girl flirts with Colton and snubs Andie, same questions asked by the same teachers. The next day is a repeat, and the next, and so on. She is caught in her own Punxsutawaney Phil movie.

Fortunately, Andie is the only one who remembers everything from the previous days, and she gains valuable insights and learns from these repetitions. On page 149, we read, “I wish there was a way to show everyone else that surly first impressions aren’t always accurate. And that even a marginally horrible person (*cough* me *cough*) is capable of changing her perspective.”

This book is a fresh look into the dynamics of the various cliques and groups in high school and has a delightful outcome, engineered by Andie as a result of what she has learned from exploring different groups from day to day.  I would recommend this as a fun read with nothing offensive or controversial to interfere with the positive message of accepting others for who they are.


Categories: Body Acceptance, Books We Recommend, Books with No Objectionable Content, Diversity, Fashion, Navigating through High School, Peer Relationships

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