“These kids are all trying so hard to be weird. I’m genuinely weird, so I can spot the effort a mile away.” – Carter
The book Carter Finally Gets It, is sophomoric, predictable, a bit shallow — and more fun for me to read than just about any in years. It’s a high school comedy, but where so many high school comedy books feel like they were written by a lame dad trying to crack jokes, this book feels authentic and legitimately funny.
Carter also feels unconventional in a few ways. The protagonist is a moderately popular jock with subpar grades, not a smart and sensitive loner — far from the typical YA hero. High school musicals and plays are something that pretty much every author of young adult fiction tackles at some point (are all authors former drama kids?) but the depiction felt fresh and romantic here.
The book hits many of the familiar notes so that there are no huge surprises, but the ride there is so immensely enjoyable, hilarious, and briskly paced that I walked away with a huge grin. This is a book that has stuck with me not because it’s high art (though I do think it’s an insightful look into the teenaged male mind), but because it knows how to consistently entertain.