Books by Simmone Howell

GIRL DEFECTIVE by Simmone Howell
Released: Sept. 2, 2014

"Funny, observant, a relentless critic of the world's (and her own) flaws, Sky is original, thoroughly authentic and great company, decorating her astute, irreverent commentary with vivid Aussie references; chasing these down should provide foreign readers with hours of online fun. (Fiction. 14 & up)"
Skylark Martin lives above her family's vintage vinyl shop that—like its merchandise—is an endangered species in their re-gentrified, forward-looking Melbourne suburb. Read full book review >
Released: Nov. 1, 2008

When overweight 16-year-old Riley Rose begins acting out after her mother's death by seeing how many boys she can bed, her born-again dad sends her to Spirit Ranch Holiday Camp for a dose of morality. There she meets wheelchair-bound Dylan, who shares her anger and outsider status. Soon they are sneaking smokes, racing around in a stolen dune buggy and falling in love. By the end of the week, Riley is open to the idea of spirituality, if not orthodoxy, and is able to forgive some of her more unenlightened bunkmates through the miracle of Dylan's acceptance. Most of the secondary characters are either underdeveloped or border on stereotype (pretty, mean girl, hot counselor cad, secretly gay camp director), and the multiple issues (weight, promiscuity, parental death, physical disability) threaten to overwhelm Riley's funny, irreverent voice, which is full of righteous indignation for the "Chubby Con Carnes" of the world. However, Riley's search for spiritual meaning is compelling and should appeal to fans of Robin Brande's Evolution, Me and Other Freaks of Nature (2007). (Fiction. 13 & up)Read full book review >
Released: April 1, 2007

Seventeen-year-old Aussie Gem is a huge film fanatic. One summer, she and her two best friends—bawdy Mira and Lo, a cutter—decide to venture into the world of '60s counter-culture and make an underground film qua Andy Warhol. When the girls have a falling-out over their script, their friendship begins to deteriorate. The apogee for the girls comes during a debauched party where events spin wildly out of control and lead to the eventual undoing of the trio. Through short, episodic chapters, Howell crafts a realistic story that female readers should relate to, specifically the turbulent and volatile nature of the girls and their friendship. Lo, Mira and Gem are sassy, whip-smart characters with interests in art, politics, literature and film—though beneath these erudite endeavors, the girls are superficial and unsteady. Gem comes to the realization that friendships may not last forever somewhat early in the narrative, foreshadowed by a comparison of Jean Negulesco's "three girl plot." A befitting contribution to the teen-literature market. (Fiction. YA)Read full book review >