This is a perfect example of the types of problems that most of my readers like to see reflected in books. Friend drama is so prevalent in middle school, and it's always something slightly different. Reading about the experience of others makes readers feel better. Older sisters who are cooler. A boy whom you like but who acts weird in public. Wanting to be in an accelerated academic program but missing your friends. These are things that affect a lot more students than the death of a parent or sibling. The Clique series was one that my daughter loved when she was in middle school, and aside from Harry Potter and the odd, unexpected title, it was nearly impossible to get her to finish a book. Books like Girl Stuff take no hand selling whatsoever; I just need to put them on a front facing display, and they are immediately picked up.
There are plenty of moments in this that are cringe worthy, but they are so true to life. Remember the magazine column in Young Miss, called Was My Face Red? No, of course not, because that magazine hasn't been published in years. But young readers still like reading about the pain other people feel, especially when they come all too close to experiencing it themselves! It's great to see more diversity in school stories. This was fun book that I will be glad to share with a wide range of readers who enjoy Melissa Kantor, Suzanne Nelson, and J.J. Howard.