Love and Other Fiascos with Lydia Goldblatt and Julie Graham-Chang: A Book Review


Love and Other FiascosTitle: The Popularity Papers: Love and Other Fiascos with Lydia Goldblatt and Julie Graham-Chang

Author: Amy Ignatow

Published: October 8th, 2013 by Amulet Books

Pages: 208

Genre: Middle Grade / Realistic Fiction

Source: Library / Hardcover

Series: The Popularity Papers: Book Four | Book Five

Summary: Love is in the air! Julie and Roland are an official “couple,” which means… well, they’re not exactly sure what, except that it makes Papa Dad extremely anxious. Meanwhile, Lydia’s mom announces that she’s marrying Coach Eric {the soccer coach from England}, and Lydia and her sister, Melody, are not happy about it. With the wedding date looming, the girls will have to figure out how to accept the inevitability of change—and that even if the change isn’t what you thought you wanted, it can still end up all right, as long as you have good friends at your side. {from Goodreads}

My Thoughts: Finishing a series can be hard, especially with the increase in new series just coming out! Thankfully, I have been able to stick with the hilarious adventures of Lydia Goldblatt and Julie Graham-Chang ever since the first book came out. Not only are the novels a refreshing change of pace from my usual reads, they are also on the shorter side, making it easy for me to read one on a lazy afternoon. The latest book lived up to any of my pre-existing expectations {and then some!}. I’m already waiting for the next one!

Lydia and Julie have been through a lot as friends, and they have even more in store. Julie and Roland have officially become a couple, and Lydia feels like a third wheel. Meanwhile, Lydia’s mom announces her wedding, and Lydia doesn’t know what to think about that! Julie and Lydia are both hilarious to read about and truly realistic. I love finding realistic main characters in any book, but it makes my day when I find some in middle grade novels! It just makes the book so much more fun to read, does it not?! I have really enjoyed seeing Lydia and Julie grow throughout this series, and I can see that maturity through their letters and journals to each other. It would be interesting to compare the first book to this one; I’m sure that the growth of the two girls would be quite evident.

Julie and Lydia are both fully developed, but the supporting characters also shine. I can’t tell you how many times I laughed at Julie’s dads’ lines! Most memorable characters for sure. The girls have awesome friends – I particularly find Roland to be so lovable. One of the biggest “pros” of this series is the relationships between family and friends. They aren’t perfect, but I think Amy Ignatow is really good at strengthening the connections in each story.

Finally, the story, friends?! It’s entertaining, interesting, and funny. I really don’t think you can ask for more! My only complaint, and it’s very minor, is that the ending felt a bit abrupt. I think it would benefit from a bit more closure, but in the grand scheme of things, it’s not that big of a deal.

Bottom line is that if you haven’t looked into The Popularity Papers yet, you might want to! It’s an easy series to get sucked into, trust me :)

Pros: The characters, both main and secondary, are all developed and show a lot of growth. I also loved the humorous storyline.

Cons: The last few pages could use a bit more closure, as I found it to be a bit abrupt.

Heads Up: Nothing big!

Overall: I give it 4 1/2 stars {**** 1/2}, and I recommend it for ages 12 and up.

Have a terrific night!


2 thoughts on “Love and Other Fiascos with Lydia Goldblatt and Julie Graham-Chang: A Book Review

  1. […] The Popularity Papers has never gotten as much attention as I think the series deserves. Amy Ignatow has delivered a terrific, hilarious, and – sometimes – all-too-realistic story about the pains of middle school, and while I am sad to see the series wrap up, I have little doubt that it will go out with a bang. {reviews: 1 / 2} […]


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