Friday, February 4, 2011

Review: Getting Revenge on Lauren Wood

Getting Revenge on Lauren Wood by Eileen Cook
288 Pages (Paperback)
Rating: 4/5

What it's about:

Popularity is the best revenge.

In the final weeks of eighth grade, Lauren Wood made a choice. She betrayed her best friend, Helen, in a manner so publicly humiliating that Helen had to move to a new town just to save face. Ditching Helen was worth it, though, because Lauren started high school as one of the It Girls--and now, at the start of her senior year, she's the cheerleading captain, the quarterback's girlfriend, and the undisputed queen bee. Lauren has everything she's ever wanted, and she has forgotten all about her ex-best friend.

But Helen could never forget Lauren. After three years of obsessing, she's moving back to her old town. She has a new name and a new look, but she hasn't dropped her old grudges. She has a detailed plan to bring down her former BFF by taking away everything that's ever been important to Lauren—starting with her boyfriend.

Watch out, Lauren Wood. Things are about to get bitchy.
What I thought:
Confession: I wouldn't have picked this book up if I hadn't seen it recommended on The Gatekeepers blog. I normally read fantasy but I'm trying to expand my horizons.
To the review: I loved it. Helen is a funny, intelligent, well developed character with the slight flaw of being bent on revenge. Of course as a reader I was at first rooting for her to carry out said revenge. And she does, in creative and dastardly ways.
Along the way Helen makes a new nerdy friend (Brenda) and meets a guy (Christopher), both of whom begin to put a spanner in the works of her revenge plans. I love both of these secondary characters, both well developed with there own little quirks and offering a sort of 'good concsience' to Helen's all encompassing obsession. Helen's grandmother is also fabulous. I'd love to have a grandmother like her.
I found Lauren Wood, ex-best friend, to be somewhat cliche but still a girl I loved to hate. It was easy for me to see why Helen would want to take her down. What I couldn't understand was why they were ever best friends in the first place. I was kind of expecting Lauren to be a little less two dimensional, to get some kind of inkling as to why she was best friends with Helen before the betrayal. With the exception of a flashback where Lauren did do something very sweet for Helen, there was nothing else of the sort.
One other small nitpicky thing I didn't understand was why Helen had such a good insight into high school popularity. She had never been one of the popular kids, and had been somewhat of a loner in her three years away. I understand that she is quite perceptive but not sure that that would extend to the point of knowing the exact steps to take to be in the 'it crowd'.
Inevitably Helen begins to question whether revenge is really worth it and has to make a few hard decisions. While it was easy to see what was coming, the ending wasn't cliche or cheesy and I felt it wrapped things up nicely.
Overall I thought Getting Revenge on Lauren Wood was a fun, entertaining read and would definitely recommend checking it out. Also, wouldn't that book just look pretty in your bookshelf?
Have you read the book? Love it? Hate it? Want to read it? What else have you been reading lately?


  1. Ooooh, revenge huh? I too love the cover, another book to add to my reading list that doesn't end. ;) Literally, I'm still on the first book ever listed since it's existence.

  2. I know, isn't the cover cool? In her acknowledgements page Eileen wrote: "Special thanks to Cara Petrus, who designs covers that are so wonderful I want to lick them."