Publisher: Entangled Teen
Publication date: May 7th 2013
My rating: 3 stars
On the outside, seventeen-year-old Madelyne Summers looks like your typical blond cheerleader—perky, popular, and dating the star quarterback. But inside, Maddie spends more time agonizing over what will happen in the next issue of her favorite comic book than planning pep rallies with her squad. That she’s a nerd hiding in a popular girl's body isn’t just unknown, it's anti-known. And she needs to keep it that way.
Summer is the only time Maddie lets her real self out to play, but when she slips up and the adorkable guy behind the local comic shop’s counter uncovers her secret, she’s busted. Before she can shake a pom-pom, Maddie’s whisked into Logan’s world of comic conventions, live-action role-playing, and first-person-shooter video games. And she loves it. But the more she denies who she really is, the deeper her lies become…and the more she risks losing Logan forever.
The Summer I Became a Nerd was a cute, flirty, and fun romance. It’s also about being true to our self no matter what other people think.
Maddie has been scarred by exposing her nerdiness in the past, so she buries love of comics, sci-fi addiction, and love of all things geek. She puts years of crafting her popular identity by becoming cheerleader and dating the high school quarterback. All this starts to unravel when she jeopardizes her reputation by going into The Phoenix, a local comic book store in search of the newest release of her favorite comic book series. The anticipation and lusting over its release trumps her fears of being outed as the nerd she is. Her undoing is Logan, the hot and geeky clerk at The Phoenix who she’s drawn to for all kinds of reasons. Soon they’re hanging out, gossiping comic stories, and LARPing (Live Action Role Play). But Maddie wants the best of both worlds and tries to have it by leading a double life and thereby risking everything good about both.
I was a little conflicted over Maddie. I understand up to a certain point why she was nervous about sharing her love/obsession of things she considered nerdy or unpopular. But after it became clear over the summer that she LOVED her life without the popular façade, I wondered why she kept sneaking around. I didn’t like that it took her so long to embrace her true self when popular persona did nothing for her. She did eventually grow up a bit, but still. On the other hand, I loved Logan! The minute he slipped on his geeky black rimmed glasses and lent Maddie his comic book, my inner nerd was sold and swooning! He was sweet and it was easy to see why he’s hurt by Maddie’s bouts of hot and cold. The gradual build of their romance was sweet and dreamy and gave me a few butterfly flutters in my stomach!
This was a cute, quick, and fun story that put smiles on my face throughout. It was a welcome change from all the drama filled books I’ve been reading lately! I would’ve breezed right through it in one sitting had life not gotten in the way.