{Review/Giveaway} CONFESSIONS OF A HATER by Caprice Crane

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Check out today's interview with author Caprice Crane!


O P E N I N G   L I N E:

   High school was pretty much like this huge party I wasn’t actually invited to, but I still had to show up to every day. Awkward much? Have you ever had one of those days when from the second you woke up you just knew everything was going to go wrong? Yeah, that was every single day of my life during freshman year at Hamilton High. I wish I could tell you I was exaggerating. I wish this was a case of me being the “ugly girl” in a teen movie who wears glasses and overalls and has her hair in a ponytail, but as soon as she changes her clothes, takes off her glasses and lets her hair down— OMG, she’s gorgeous, how did we not see it before? 
   Yeah, that’s not me.
(pg. 3, US ARC edition)
Read an excerpt now!

Adult author Caprice Crane's debut YA offering is the quintessential high school revenge story that will resonate with anyone who's ever experienced cliques and the horrors of fitting in. If you've ever felt invisible, or dreamed about taking down a "Mean Girl," this book will fulfill all your fantasies!

Hailey Harper hates school. Everyone puts her down and torments her. When her family moves away, she's not excited about going to a new school and learning to survive all over again, but she won't miss her old school, either. Upon going through boxes her sister that are allocated for Goodwill, she comes across her popular college sister Noel's old diary, entitled How to be a Hater. It outlines the Dos and Don'ts of high school. Hailey decides to keep her sister's cooler clothes and discard her own, more boring outfits and follow the rules in Noel's diary. She makes a splash at her new school, and even gets in right away with the popular crowd. Dream Come True, right? Wrong. Hailey quickly realizes she doesn't like being a Popular Girl. She wants to have fun, not pretend. She doesn't want to "check in" with Queen Bee Skyler every time she goes shopping in case she accidentally buys something Skyler "likes." Hailey leaves the popular girls and brings together a rag-tag team of friends that begin calling themselves The Invisibles. The girls all decide to follow the Noel's rules and give the popular crowd a taste of their own medicine...but they never dream of where this goal will take them!

CONFESSIONS OF A HATER explores the dynamics of high school cliques and relationships. Do you stay true to yourself or pretend to be someone you're not in order to fit in? When does a good idea go too far and become a bad one? How do you get back at a mean, popular girl without becoming mean yourself? Hailey goes through many firsts over the course of the novel, including navigating the foreign terrain of her first boyfriend. One of her interactions with him is explicit, making the novel something I wouldn't recommend to a young teen, though the message of self-identity is most important for impressionable freshmen and sophomores. There's a lot going on in the novel, and Hailey has so much to deal with, as do many of today's teenagers. Crane looks at family relationships, misusing Adderall to get ahead in school, the effects of teen pregnancy, and more. Hailey never knew she'd go through so much drama when she moved away and finally stepped into a "real" life!

Crane has a great voice that's easy to fall into. While, at times, it felt too trendy, it was quirky and unique. I was thrown at times when references were thrown out such as Wet Seal catalogs (Are those even still a thing?) that felt like an adult remembering her own high school years, but there was enough of a mix with modern lingo (Hello, Kim Kardashian reference, I'm looking at you) to rein things in again. For the most part, the voice was great, though Hailey's remarks were too spot-on to be a teenager's at times. Then again, there are teens that speak like that and are wise beyond their years, so I just chalked the moments up to that. Ultimately, the text was very readable and engaging, and that's the most important thing, in my opinion.

Hailey is gifted, talented, and funny, and her story carries a great message about self-identity and the lengths one will go in order to survive and excel in life. It's also a fun take-down story, albeit with a twist not seen in most situations like this. I like the fact that this wasn't a book where Hailey reinvented herself to be a Popular Girl and stay there like so many other stories, but realize that she's okay and awesome the way she is and blossoms once she embraces herself. We need more of a mix in these types of books, and it's nice to see one that keeps twisting the message in new ways once you think you know where everything is going!

C O V E R   D E S I G N:

KA-POW!  I love the comic strip look of this cover! It works for the novel, too, since Hailey is a great artist who creates a comic strip in her school paper, Abby Invisble, the New Kid at School!

Even better? The interior is just as snazzy, and you know how much I love a great interior!

Every chapter begins with a song quote and more comic halftone patterns:

The bottom of each page continues this theme:

And the chapter headings?
Isn't it great? I think it adds atmosphere, and I'm a fan of everything, the back jacket, the spine, the title insert pages, etc. It works really well for me!

O F F I C I A L   I N F O:

Author: Caprice Crane
Release Date: Aug. 27, 2012
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends / Macmillan
Received: For Review 

Mean girls are always the haters - Right? 

Hailey Harper has always felt invisible. Now her dad has a new job and the family is moving to Hollywood. Just what Hailey needs: starting a new high school. 

As she's packing, Hailey finds a journal that belonged to her older sister, Noel, who is away at college. Called "How to Be a Hater," it's full of info Hailey can really use. Has Hailey found the Bible of Coolness? Will it help her reinvent herself at her new school? Will her crush notice her? Will she and the other Invisibles dethrone the popular mean girls? After all, they deserve it. Don't they? 

Caprice Crane's funny--and deeply felt--observations about high school, bullies, popularity, friendship, and romance will leave teens thinking...and talking.
Caprice Crane is a screenwriter and novelist who'll be making her way into your movie theaters, bookshelves, and hearts in the very near future!
Visit Caprice on her website, InstagramTwitter, and Facebook!

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  1. I didn't even know about this book before seeing it here and after reading the synopsis, I know this is a book that I MUST read. Thanks for sharing and the giveaway!


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