Author: Sarra Manning
Series: Stand Alone
Genres: Contemporary, Realistic Fiction, Romance, Young Adult
Released: 24 May 2012
Summary: via goodreads.com Jeane Smith is seventeen and has turned her self-styled dorkiness into an art form, a lifestyle choice and a profitable website and consultancy business. She writes a style column for a Japanese teen magazine and came number seven in The Guardian's 30 People Under 30 Who Are Changing The World. And yet, in spite of the accolades, hundreds of Internet friendships and a cool boyfriend, she feels inexplicably lonely, a situation made infinitely worse when Michael Lee, the most mass-market, popular and predictably all-rounded boy at school tells Jeane of his suspicion that Jeane's boyfriend is secretly seeing his girlfriend. Michael and Jeane have NOTHING in common - she is cool and individual; he is the golden boy in an Abercrombie & Fitch T-shirt. So why can't she stop talking to him?
My Review: So…Adorkable. Definitely not what I was expecting from a young adult novel. I’ve read a lot of British authors in the past and I’ve never come across anyone quite like Sarra Manning. She is so sharp in her writing style that at times it’s a little hard to keep up with her. For some reason I always expect her books to be really light and funny looks at British teens. This is definitely not what they are at all. The characters in Adorkable do not act like teenagers. I can’t figure out if this is simply an ‘English’ thing or if it something…more? Maybe it’s my Americanism shining through, but the school that Michael and Jeane go to looks like an American high school and feels like an American high school, but somehow the kids that attend this school have the maturity level of, like, twenty-five year olds. They also have the same issues, or similar issues as twenty-five year olds. This was also something that bothered. This is definitely not a book that I would classify into the “Young Adult” category, although the F word is in it minimally (strange for a Brit read) there were a lot of other situations that made me a little bit slack jawed. The thing I really did enjoy though was Manning's unabashed and poignant view of social networking. Jeane says so many things, especially in reference to Twitter about logging on and not feeling so alone, whereas Michael realizes that it's temporary. It really was amazing to see the underlying political commentary on social networking that rungs throughout this novel. However, my big problem really it goes back to the main characters, they act so much older. Their thoughts are so much older, their reactions to things are so much more adult. I have a feeling that this is a British thing, but it was still slightly unsettling. Although I liked watching the drama between Michael and Jeane play out, their relationship is definitely multi-layered and both of them grow from it, it did become convoluted by the end. It was nice that Michael was realizing why Jeane acted and reacted the way that she does to things, and it helped from a reader stand point, but I still felt like Michael was all feeling, and Jeane was all about – herself. Even things from her perspective projected this mentality, and that’s what I disliked about it. Although Michael is trying to justify her actions, Jeane’s point of view doesn’t back them up. That is why this is getting kind of a low rating, I just couldn't identify with Jeane enough to make her likeable.