Review Blog

Aug 25 2008

The (not quite) perfect boyfriend by Lili Wilkinson

cover image Allen and Unwin 2008. ISBN 9781741753462 (Girlfriend Fiction)
One of the new series called Girlfriend Fiction, this story revolves around Midge whose best friend, Tahni never seems to have any trouble getting a boyfriend. Midge on the other hand is unattached and has always been so. To avoid another bout of nagging by Tahni, Midge creates a boyfriend, a boy she met during the holidays who has returned to England. All is well until Ben turns up as a new boy at school, straight from England and very close to Midge's description.

The compound of errors and mistakes arising from this blunder, cause a whole heap of trouble for all concerned, with Midge finding out that Ben, despite realizing what has happened and doing the right thing by Midge, is not what he seems, and Tahni taking umbrage at her suggestions about the other new boy, George. All is resolved in the end of course, but not before a few lessons are learned all round. Lili Wilkinson writes in up to date language using all the technical know how of this generation, which makes the read most satisfying for anyone under 15 or so. And I loved her stress on grammar and spelling, with each chapter heading introducing a new word underscored by the text. Lili Wilkinson has a voice that is most appealing and presents issues common in our schools, saving face, looking beyond what is presented, and being yourself.
Fran Knight
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