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THE LONELY HEARTS CLUB by Elizabeth Eulberg


by Elizabeth Eulberg

Age Range: 14 & up

Pub Date: Jan. 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-545-14031-7
Publisher: Point/Scholastic

In a spirited, feminist debut, musician Eulberg traces the resilience of a 16-year-old suburban high-school junior who turns her disappointment in love into a happy affirmation of autonomy and friendship. When Penny Lane Bloom is jilted, she turns for solace to the only guys who have never broken her heart: John, Paul, George, and Ringo. Tired of the boy runaround, Penny starts the Lonely Hearts Club, devoted to “the benefits of being single,” with herself as the only member. Soon, however, the other girls at McKinley High School join with enthusiasm (and some occasional cattiness), like Diane Monroe, the once-clingy arm fixture of star athlete Ryan Bauer, now destined for the basketball team. Swearing off boys might be a beautiful notion, but it’s short-lived, as even Penny is tempted by Ryan, and the school principal fears a boys’ backlash. The dialogue-heavy adventure addresses tender teen concerns of conformity versus self-preservation, but the formulaic plotting doesn’t lift this effort above the rest, despite the mildly amusing Beatles gimmick. (Fiction. 14 & up)