Sunday, September 07, 2008

Geek Magnet ****

Scott, Kieran. Geek Magnet: A Novel in Five Acts. 2007

KJ is the stage manager of her school's Spring Musical and she has one big problem-- she is a geek magnet. She doesn't lack for male attention but she seems to get all the guys she DOESN'T want, while the one guy she wants doesn't seem to know she is alive. There is Fred, her neighbor who has been following her around for years. Then there is Andy, her Assistant Stage Manager. Then there is Glenn, the kid on the light crew who stares only at her boobs and touches her inappropriately.

Tama, one of the popular girls who happens to have a lead in the play is friends with Cameron, the love of KJ's life. Tama manages to get Cameron interested in KJ. She also offers to help KJ get rid of her guy problem by teaching her to be mean. She manages to get the geeks to back off, but she ends up hurting a lot of feelings along the way and also manages to alienate herself from her best friend and most of the cast in the process.

Meanwhile, KJs father is an alcoholic. He drinks every day and is often mean. The entire family is on eggshells trying to keep him from flying off the handle. Her younger brother Chris is a mess all the time and her mother seems to be oblivious. The alcoholism seems to take a backseat to the whole drama of the musical and doesn't get the treatment it might deserve. I guess the point of the novel was to be fun, so the focus was more on the musical drama and not on the social issues. It makes me wonder if it really needed to be in there to begin with, but that's just a small criticism and it doesn't take away from the novel at all.

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