Monday, January 11, 2010

Review by Alex: The Disreputable History of Frankie Landeau-Banks

The Disreputable History of Frankie Landeau-Banks by E. Lockhart

Frankie Landau-Banks at age 14:
Debate Club.Her father’s “bunny rabbit.”
A mildly geeky girl attending a highly competitive boarding school.

Frankie Landau-Banks at age 15:
A knockout figure.
A sharp tongue.
A chip on her shoulder.
And a gorgeous new senior boyfriend: the supremely goofy, word-obsessed Matthew Livingston.

Frankie Laundau-Banks.
No longer the kind of girl to take “no” for an answer.

Especially when “no” means she’s excluded from her boyfriend’s all-male secret society.
Not when her ex boyfriend shows up in the strangest of places.

Not when she knows she’s smarter than any of them.
When she knows Matthew’s lying to her.
And when there are so many, many pranks to be done.

Frankie Landau-Banks, at age 16:
Possibly a criminal mastermind.

This is the story of how she got that way.

First Impression: Having read this gem a couple years ago (or was it last year? Whenever the book first came out), I felt like rereading it when I found it in a library. :) So naturally I took the novel and devoured it, falling in love once again.

Frankie is a fantastically strange and intelligent girl, tired of being Bunny Rabbit, the cute arm candy to her boyfriend Matthew, the innocent child to her family. And so she plots... she plots crazy schemes to turn her boarding school upside down, all the while no one knowing her identity.

All the characters are wonderfully unique and different. Frankie, mentioned above. Matthew, her silly boyfriend, who comes from a prominent family, who is obsessed with words (like he actually cares about the difference between "I could care less" and "I couldn't care less". He automatically gets the Alex Stamp of Approval.), who loves Frankie, but doesn't think of her as the intelligently superior girl that she is. Alpha, Matthew's best friend, who doesn't come from a prominent family, being illegimate, who is a natural born leader, who pretends to be a bravadous boy but is really more ordinary than he seems, who, as it turns out, is the boy everyone thinks is pulling all these pranks. But he's not.

The genius behind this book is not just the characters, but the ideas too. Panopticon, for example, is brilliantly used. Wiki it if you must. Neglected positives, words like "turbed", from "disturbed", are words Frankie spouts constantly. Love.

Final Impressions: The humor is spot on, the ideas are magnificient, the characters are never dull- in fact, some are magnificiently silly, as Frankie puts it.

Favourite Character: Frankie. But Matthew and Alpha pull some close seconds.

Note this! Fun tidbit: I gave Lauren 3 clues: "My new goal is to become magnificiently silly", "I have also decided to use neglected positives" and, "and mastermind boarding pranks". She got it after the third. :P


  1. This definitely makes me want to read this book now :) Great review!


  2. I LOVED that book! I read it in one sitting it was that good! I am glad to see I was not the only one who was blown away. :)

  3. One of my favorite books last year. I'll never forget Frankie.

  4. Sounds like a great read. I will have to check it out.

  5. I read it in one sitting it was that good! I am glad to see I was not the only one who was blown away.

    Work from home India

  6. This book is so gorgeous and I fell in love with it too! Have you read The Boyfriend List? I liked that one, but not as much as I liked Frankie.

  7. Frankie sounds super cool and interesting. . .and I kind of love that cover!!

  8. A reread, high praise. I will be looking for this one, word obsession is right up my alley. Thanks for sharing this.


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