Tue, September 3, 2013

Jessica Darling’s It List Review

Jessica Darling's It List book cover

Jessica Darling's It List book cover

Jessica Darling’s It List #1: The (Totally Not) Guaranteed Guide to Popularity, Prettiness & Perfection
By Megan McCafferty
Publication date: Sept. 3, 2013
Poppy, 240 pages
Source: Publisher

Move over, Dork Diaries! Jessica Darling, star of Megan McCafferty’s bestselling Jessica Darling series for adults, is back in a hilarious new series perfect for tween (10 to 14) girls.

I hadn’t even gotten to homeroom yet and I’d already discovered five hard truths about junior high:

1. My best friend had turned pretty.
2. She didn’t know it yet.
3. It wouldn’t be long before she did.
4. That knowledge would change everything between us.
5. And there wasn’t a thing I could do about it.

It’s the first day of seventh grade. Is Jessica Darling doomed for dorkdom?

New York Times bestselling author Megan McCafferty’s hilarious series opener will have you laughing, cringing, and cheering for Jessica Darling as she learns that being herself beats being popular, pretty & perfect any day.

— Goodreads.com description

It’s no secret that Megan McCafferty’s Jessica Darling books are my favorite of all time.

I am the very definition of fanatic: I’ve made videos declaring my love of the series, I showed you how much I FREAKED out when I met Megan for the first time earlier this year…you’ve probably heard me say “READ THESE BOOKS” a million times by now.


These books capture all of the realistic, funny and heartbreaking bits of growing up in a way most young adult novels just don’t get. Most girls aren’t spies, princesses, demon hunters, space travelers, assassins or wizards. Their biggest problems aren’t saving the world; they’re getting their first kiss, breaking up, fighting with their friends, battling with their siblings and dealing with their weirdo parents. And the Jessica Darling series gets that.

I’ve never read anything that felt so real, so true to my own experiences.

And now, with Jessica Darling’s It List — Megan’s new middle grade series — I’m thrilled a new generation of girls will get to experience the characters that have so touched my life as a reader.

If you know a 10-year-old, GET HER THIS BOOK. At that age, I remember being so curious about what junior high would bring. A lot of changes in body image, self esteem, friendships, boys, family and more, that’s for sure. I’m glad this book is out there to help girls through that time with plenty of laughter and honesty.

For the older readers who have loved this series for years: It is a gift to you. I thought my time with these characters was over, but as I read, it felt so special to be treated to a few more moments and laughs with them. Even though Marcus, Sara, Manda, Bridget, Hope and all of the Darlings are so much younger than when we first met them, they are still so sharp and witty and unique that the trip back in time hardly mattered. It felt like coming home again.

Ahhh, anyway, I realize I’m being really mushy and much more long-winded than I normally am in my reviews. But you have to understand: To me, this is the equivalent of J.K. Rowling writing a new Harry Potter book. IT IS A BIG DEAL. And I’m so very thrilled it lived up to and went beyond each one of my expectations.

Thank you, Megan!

Anna Reads young adult book blog

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Posted by: Anna   •   In: family, friendship, megan mccafferty


  1. Estelle said:

    YES. YES. YES.

    Is there more to say? 🙂


    Anna Reply:

    Exactly! 😉


    olecia Reply:

    can someone send this book to me


    Posted on: Tue, September 3, 2013

  2. Joli said:

    I love that we get to see our favorite characters at a younger age. I recently won a copy of this book from Megan for my niece who doesn’t like to read. I’m hoping that this book is the one that makes her fall in love with reading, I’m waiting to read it so she and I can read it together. I don’t know how long I can hold out (she’s visiting in 2 weeks). Your review just confirms that I have something wonderful to look forward to!


    Posted on: Tue, September 3, 2013

  3. Ginger @ GReads! said:

    I have always loved your enthusiasm for this series (for this writer!). You have infected me with Jessica Darling & everything Marcus Flutie. I’ve been waiting for the right time to read this one, but alas, there is never a right time. NOW is the right time. It’s happening, SOON.


    Posted on: Tue, September 3, 2013

  4. Tara said:

    You ARE the ultimate Jessica Darling fangirl!


    Posted on: Tue, September 3, 2013

  5. Kate said:

    I still need to finish this series! Cannot wait to pick this one up soon though.


    Posted on: Tue, September 3, 2013

  6. Annie said:

    I haven’t started on Jessica Darling yet but this sounds great! Wish I had it when I was in middle school. Would have prevented many mistakes. Now if only there was one for high school…

    Great review, Anna! Your passion for Jessica Darling is infectious! I can’t wait to start reading Sloppy Firsts!


    Posted on: Tue, September 3, 2013

  7. Jessica Darling’s It List #1 | Megan McCafferty | Book Review said:

    […] Reads – “plenty of laughter and honesty” Alluring Reads – “full of laughs” Slatebreakers – “Do not […]

    Posted on: Tue, September 3, 2013

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