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by Lauren Myracle

Age Range: 14 & up

Pub Date: April 1st, 2005
ISBN: 0-8109-5859-7
Publisher: Amulet/Abrams

Where does high school popularity come from? In cutthroat Crestview Academy, it comes from black magic. Like everyone at Crestview, dorky Janie and Alicia want to be liked by the Bitches, the three popular girls who rule the school. Janie can scarcely believe it when Mary Bryan, Keisha and Bitsy invite her into their clique. Every year, apparently, the Bitches choose a desperate, nerdy girl and make her over into a queen. The cost? Not so high: Janie needs to steal something inexpensive from another student and leave it on the desk of creepy teacher Lurl the Pearl. Isn’t it a coincidence that the student Janie steals from—best friend Alicia—becomes immediately unpopular and klutzy? Alas, Janie discovers her wondrous new popularity is rooted in evil powers. Though Keisha and Mary Bryan cause minimal harm, Bitsy is not so magnanimous. If only Janie could keep her popularity and be a good person, too. No feel-good ending here: Myracle’s self-involved, callous, and cruel high-schoolers are the worst of the breed. Darkly comic, well realized and upsetting. (Fiction. YA)