Pretty Funny for a Girl
Peachtree Publishing Company
Published October 1, 2020
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About Pretty Funny for a Girl
Haylah Swinton is an ace best friend, a loving daughter, and an incredibly patient sister to a four-year-old nutcase of a brother. Best of all, she’s pretty confident she’s mastered making light of every situation–from her mom’s new boyfriend to unsolicited remarks on her plus-sized figure. Haylah’s learning to embrace all of her curvy parts and, besides, she has a secret: one day, she’ll be a stand-up comedian star.
So when impossibly cool and thirstalicious Leo reveals he’s also into comedy, Haylah jumps at the chance to ghost-write his sets. But is Leo as interested in returning the favor? Even though her friends warn her of Leo’s intentions, Haylah’s not ready to listen–and she might just be digging herself deeper toward heartbreak. If Haylah’s ever going to step into the spotlight, first she’ll need to find the confidence to put herself out there and strut like the boss she really is.
Okay, so when I first asked to review this book, I had it mixed up with a different book that I’d wanted to read. Then when I got the book and read the cover copy, I realized it was not the book I’d been thinking of, and I was a little disappointed. Then.
I started reading. And I found that I really liked Haylah’s voice. She’s blunt and pragmatic and, as the title hints, hilarious. I loved her relationship with her mom and little brother. I also loved the way she leaned into her awkwardness. Her way of dealing with kids picking on her is as genius as it is heartbreaking. I wanted to stand up and cheer for her when she changed the name she wanted to be called.
Haylah wrestles with a lot of things on her journey, from finding confidence to believe she can be a comedian to wrestling with how she feels about her body and how to be beautiful in a way that’s authentically hers and stays true to her feminist values. I loved that the story tackled some of those nuanced issues in this really frank, believable way, and in a way that made me laugh out loud and cheer.
If you’re looking for a book packed with humor and personal triumph, PRETTY FUNNY FOR A GIRL needs to be on your shelf.
Recommended for Ages 12 up.
Haylah is a self-described fat girl. Leo is Black.
Profanity/Crude Language Content
Mild profanity used a few times. Some crude language used throughout.
Kissing between boy and girl.
Some bullying and name-calling.
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