REVIEW: How To Be Bad by Lauren Myracle, Sarah Mlynowski, and E. Lockhart

by - 9:41 PM

“’Cause maybe, sometimes, a girl’s gotta be bad in order to figure out how to be good.”

Back of the book blurb: 

Vicks is the wild child whose boyfriend has gone suspiciously quiet since he left for college; Mel is the newcomer desperate to be liked; and Jessie will do anything to avoid a life-altering secret. Each one has her own reason for wanting to get the heck out of their nowheresville town, even just for the weekend. So they climb into Jesse’s mom’s “borrowed” station wagon and head south.
      Hearts will be broken, friendships will be tested, and a ridiculously hot stranger could change the course of everything.

A message from the cosmos:


Honestly, there were very few things I did not enjoy about this book. And if I didn’t like something, it was very minor, for example, that hideous cover. I get the significance of the alligator now but the colors—ew—and that font… just… no. Who designed this?

I think that’s the only thing I didn’t like about this book. I hadn’t read a book that didn’t have a very prominent love story in so long, I honestly forgot how fun it can be to just read about best friends and their audacious escapades—anyone remember Cornelia and the Audacious Escapades of the Somerset Sisters? Anyway, this gave me a vibe of if Morgan Matson’s Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour and Since You’ve Been Gone were meshed together and took out the majority of the lovey dovey stuff. Obviously, since this book was published in 2008, it came out before both of those books. Regardless, it was such an entertaining read, especially because of how different the characters were!

You have Jesse, a “christianpants” as Vicks would call her; Vicks, a free-spirited flirt; and Mel, the shy rich girl. Putting such different characters into one story is obviously the best way to get a plot going. Myracle, Mlynowski, and Lockhart all were brilliant in depicting each of their characters (if that’s how they did it). I thought I’d be so annoyed with Jesse the entire time because of how nonreligious I am. However, by the end of the book, I was crying with her when she finally told her friends about her “life-altering secret.” They all had serious character development, but Jesse, in my opinion, had the best development. You’ll end up finding yourself in each of these characters, which is such a beautiful thing.

I think I identified with Mel the most just because of how insecure she felt. I still struggle with insecurity, so I can relate so well with people who feel like they’re less than everyone around them. I am always drawn to those characters the most, so I was so happy to see how she gained confidence by the end of the book.

There were a few uses of the word “slut” in this book, which bugs my inner feminist. No one is a slut… that’s just a made up word so women can’t have as much fun as men. People only make bad choices. The way the conflict was resolved was very satisfying and by the end of the book, I had already forgotten all about it.

To wrap it all up, Myracle, Mlynowski, and Lockhart are all exceptional authors who pulled off co-writing this book with ease and grace. The characters are lovable, relatable, and oh so entertaining. This story about friendship and all the problems and rewards that come with it will make you laugh and cry. It will also make you want to take a road trip with your besties! This one definitely earned its four stars.

The Cosmic Reader

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