The History of Hilary Hambrushina

Reviewed by Melanie on October 12, 2017


Hilary, like most girls getting ready to start middle school, longs to be popular and belong to the popular group. Throughout the book she seems to learn that “cool” like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder.

After giving up on the book before this one, I was glad for an easy read. The story is well written and told by Hilary, who is writing her autobiography. The story begins at the beginning of summer after sixth grade and ends at Christmas Break for her seventh grade year.

The characters, even the bullies, are relatable. It’s tough to be a girl moving into middle school, whether your cool or not, and Hilary and the other characters give a well rounded look at the different types of people you’re likely to encounter in school, no matter what grade you are in.

The book may come off as a bit simple, I read it in just a couple of hours, but it hits on complex themes. From bullying to accepting who you are, I feel like this is a great book for any one getting ready to begin a scary new adventure — whether it’s starting school, a new job, or just a situation that may get you out of your comfort zone.

I thoroughly enjoyed the book and plan to share it with my ten year old daughter as well. She has just begun middle school, and I feel like it will help her to understand that most kids are apprehensive about a new school and how they’ll fit in.

The History of Hilary Hambrushina Book Cover The History of Hilary Hambrushina
Marnie Lamb
Young Adult, Academic, School
Iguana Books
May 31, 2017
Kindle eBook

Hilary has one goal for her first year in junior high: to become popular. But her plans are turned upside down when her best friend leaves for the summer and a quirky girl named Kallie moves in next door. Kallie paints constellations on her ceiling, sleeps in a hammock, and enacts fantastical plays in front of cute boys on the beach. Yet despite Kallie’s lack of interest in being “cool,” Hilary and Kallie find themselves becoming friends. That summer friendship, however, is put to the test when school begins, reigniting Hilary's obsession with climbing the social ladder. As Hilary discovers the dark side to popularity, she must decide who she wants to be before she loses everything.

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