Review: Geek Girl 5: Head Over Heels by Holly Smale

A solid new addition to the Geek Girl series.

Publication date: 7th April 2016
Publisher: HarperCollins Children’s

The fifth instalment in the Geek Girl series, Head Over Heels does not disappoint. True to form, we follow Harriet Manners down complex routes, as she tries to navigate being a total geek, and a top model.

Focusing, not so much on romance – though there is a dash of that! – but on the value of friendship and family, Harriet Manners develops in a new, though perhaps not unexpected, way in this novel. Despite retaining the humour which runs through the entire series, there is a seriousness to this book which only shines through in glimpses. Harriet is trying to juggle the memories and heartbreak, whilst intent on being carefree and ‘fun’ – something the reader only slowly realises might be taking its toll on our vibrant heroine.

The writing is clear and up-beat, with a natural flow to it which keeps the reader hooked. The characters are the perfect balance of unrealistic (who can regurgitate so many facts and still retain friends?!) and totally relatable, making for a wonderfully entertaining novel. Harriet is a fantastic creation with an ever-expanding emotional world, resourceful and impressive as always.

I would have to recommend the series in its entirety, as the reader definitely gains a lot from having a bit of context, however it is good enough to potentially stand on its own. It’s a great, humorous book for a middle grade audience. I would recommend avoiding it if you have difficulty dealing with misunderstandings and awkwardness – as I know some people do. Otherwise, a thoroughly enjoyable read.

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