Popular: Vintage Wisdom for a Modern Geek, by Maya Van Wagenen

A terrific 2014 memoir of a shy, geeky, 8th-grade girl who decides, on the advice of a 1950s book called Betty Cornell’s Teenage Popularity Guide, to make herself over and become popular. And she follows the directions, from facials to pearls and girdles, and discovers a remarkable truth. Other people are shy too, and many of them respond positively if you reach out. The author was 15 when she wrote the book and she has a wry sensibility that makes this a joy to read. For 12 and up.


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