Mischa Abramavicius is a walking, talking, top-scoring, perfectly well-rounded college application in human form. So when she's rejected not only by the Ivies, but her loathsome safety school, she is shocked and devastated. All the sacrifices her mother made to send her to prep school, the late nights cramming for tests, the blatantly résumé-padding extracurriculars (read: Students for Sober Driving) ... all that for nothing. As Mischa grapples with the prospect of an increasingly uncertain future, she questions how this could have happened in the first place. Is it possible that her transcript was hacked? With the help of her best friend and sometimes crush, Nate, and a group of eccentric techies known as "The Ophelia Syndicate," Mischa launches an investigation that will shake the quiet community of Blanchard Prep to its stately brick foundations. In her sophomore novel, A. E. Kaplan cranks the humor to full blast, and takes a serious look at the extreme pressure of college admissions.
We Regret To Inform YouFeatured
Mischa can't tell her mom, a single parent who has given up a lot to send Mischa to her expensive private school, about her troubles. And she's too embarrassed to talk to her friends. But she eventually opens up to her best friend, Nate, and then she seeks the help of the Ophelias--a fun, smart, and interesting trio of tech-savvy girls who start to unravel the mystery behind Mischa's college rejections.
WE REGRET TO INFORM YOU chronicles the nightmare of countless high school students, and reading it is sure to induce anxiety in many working to snag a place in one of their top colleges. But this isn't just a story about the senior year admissions race; Mischa's attempts to reframe how she thinks of herself in light of her circumstances will resonate with all teens going through a time of transition. There is also plenty of humor, a bit of a mystery, and just enough romance--so it's a book that will appeal to a wide range of readers.
There is more depth to WE REGRET TO INFORM YOU than I expected. While Nate offers plenty of comic relief, he is also a complex character, and Mischa's mom's perspective also provides interesting twists.
This book is a cautionary tale about the pressure and expectations placed on high school students, but it's also a lot of fun. I also found it hard to put the book down once The Ophelias get involved. In short, WE REGRET TO INFORM YOU is a terrific novel that I happily recommend. My thanks to the publisher and YA Books Central for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.
Both thoughtful and fun
What worked: Wowza. Just wow. The voice in this novel totally grabbed me. Humorous with snappy dialogue that keeps you turning the pages. The whole theme of an overachieving teen and the high level of anxiety totally rang true. Mischa is that student who is 'perfect'. She does everything right, takes all the AP classes, studies all night to make sure she gets that A, and has high aspirations of attending an elite college when she graduates. When that dream is taken away, she doesn't know who she really is. I really feel this novel will speak to teens out there who deal with the high pressure of succeeding. I personally have seen this with my own teenager. The stress and peer pressure to be on the top is very real.
The conspiracy angle of the story makes sense when readers find out who is behind tampering transcripts in order to keep some teens, like Mischa, out of college. I liked how it wasn't oblivious at first, but the characters have to figure out not only by getting into the school's database, but have to trust each other too.
Friendships are challenged and new ones are formed. Also the whole question of what about having fun and not taking life too seriously is addressed too.
Must-read contemporary novel of a teen who finds out that everything she'd worked toward disappears and how she must trust others to find out the truth of a dark secret in her high school. Laced with snappy dialogue and humor, this is a story sure to resonate with readers.
2. humorous, snappy dialogue