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Into the Wild Nerd Yonder by Julie Halpern

Rating: 4/5 Stars

Genre: Contemporary

Release Date: 9/29/09

Reviewed from an ARC sent by the author

About the Book: Jessie doesn't know where she belongs in high school anymore. Her best friends have turned into overnight punks. Her punk rock brother is dating the prom princess. In a quest to find new friends, Jessie stumbles upon the Dungeons and Dragons crowd. But if she ventures into the wild nerd yonder, can she ever come back?

GreenBeanTeenQueen Says: I love Julie Halpern-she writes with so much humor and heart that it makes for a great read. As a fellow nerd, I adored Jessie's journey to the nerd side. Granted, Jessie was never a super popular girl herself. She claims to be a mathlete and her hobby is sewing various skirts made from fun themed fabric. (I wish I could sew just to do that too!) But Jessie knows the D&D crowd is a new level of nerd and she doesn't know if she's ready to go there.

Aside from the nerd storyline, there's a great storyline about what makes a true friend. And we all know friendships don't suddenly become easier because you get older. Honestly, I hated Bizza (one of Jessie's punk-turned best friends). She was an uber jerk, but like many people in that situation, Jessie didn't see it. I was cheering her on the whole way to stand up for herself.

What I liked most about this book is that the nerd's aren't all that nerdy. Sure, Jessie's embarassed about the D&D crowd, but when you get down to it, they're just normal people having fun with a hobby they enjoy. After finishing this one, I told my husband I need to nerd it up more. (Not sure how to do that really, since I'm pretty nerdy already) But Into the Wild Nerd Yonder made me miss my nerdy high school days of gushing over Star Trek and X-Files and writing fanfiction (and yes, acting out our fanfiction in my friend's basement) I even have an interest in giving Dungeons and Dragons a try sometime!

Nerd or not, I think anyone who's ever tried to break into a new clique or struggled with friendship will enjoy Into the Wild Nerd Yonder. Plus, there's some nerdy love that's so super cute!!

Fun side note: Julie Halpern really likes Rupert Grint (Ron from Harry Potter) and mentions him in the book. I finished this one while waiting in the theater for our midnight showing of HP6 to start, so I felt like I was sharing in the Rupert love. What better place to read a book about nerds?

Full Disclosure: ARC recieved from the author

Thanks to Julie Halpern for sending me a copy to review!

Comments

  1. Nerd love! That just sounds adorable. I have to read this book. I too wrote fan-fiction and was a major nerd in high school. And my first kiss was with a Matrix nerd who like to Ska dance. Ah, those were the nerdy days...

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  2. Ooh, this sounds like a fun read! I'll have to keep an eye out for it. Thanks for the review!

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  3. Aw, I love Rupert Grint. That's awesome. I really want to read this one too...Yay for Nerd Love. :)

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  4. That sounds like a fun book!! Ahh...to be young and nerdy again. Oh wait, at least I'm still nerdy! lol

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  5. Great, thoughtful, fun review. It makes me want to pick up this book immediately.

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  6. Awww I love Rupert Grint too! I think I'll buy the book just bcoz of that :) awwww...

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  7. Is D&D still a big thing in high schools? I got the impression that gaming was still big, but not necessarily D&D itself, more like modern gaming systems based on anime and such. I could be wrong, though, not having been in high school for several years :)

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Hello! My name is Sarah and I am a Youth Services Manager who works with kids, tweens and teens. I love being asked about great books to read! I started my blog in 2008 as a way to keep track of what I've been reading and to use a reference tool for reader's advisory and it's grown into much more than I could have ever anticipated. In addition to book reviews, I also enjoy posting audiobook reviews, booklists and my adventures in being a librarian. 2017 Library Journal Mover and Shaker Committees: 2021 Newbery Committee 2018 Odyssey Committee 2016 Caldecott Award 2013 Michael L. Printz Committee- Fabulous Films Committee I have also served on the Cybils, Missouri State Library Association Readers Selection Lists, and as an Audies judge. Presentations :  I have offered various presentations at local, state and national libraries and conferences. Topics have included:  What's New in Children's & Teen Literature Engaging Teens in Reader's Advisory Gee