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Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Book Review: Love Is for Losers by Wibke Brueggemann

Phoebe's best friend Polly has started dating a really stupid, gross boy, and never even wished Phoebe a happy new year, so Phoebe is done with her. Which is just as well as her whole life has deteriorated. Her mother, a doctor with Doctors Without Borders, has gone overseas again, abandoning Phoebe with her godmother, Kate. And then Phoebe has accidentally let Kate's prize-winning purebred cats out of the house and one has come back pregnant, so Phoebe now owes Kate the breeding fee Kate can't get for the cat. Which is how Phoebe ends up volunteering (working off the money she's owed) at the thrift shop Kate manages.

While there, almost against her will, Phoebe makes friends. Emma, who is her age, and a variety of other people at the shop, who range in ages and abilities (including Alex who has Down Syndrome, and elderly couple, and a middle aged woman who seems to hate her.) While it would be good if Phoebe were to make up with Polly (but I'm not giving that away), it's also very good that she stretches herself and makes new friends, and particularly that she makes friends across generations and almost none of them are people she would have chosen. Phoebe is very sure of herself, knows exactly what she likes (and hates), has extremely strong (and sarcastic) opinions, and yet against her will she grows and learns about life. And love. And kittens.

This book is published by Farrar Strauss and Giroux Books for Young Readers, a division of Macmillan, my employer.

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