Hardcover: 320 pages
Publisher: Point (Jan 1 2010)
Penny is sick of boys and sick of dating, so she vows: No more. She’s had one too many bad dates, and has been hurt by one too many bad boys. It’s a personal choice... and, of course, soon everyone wants to know about it. It’s about much more than romance gone awry--it’s also about the way girls bend over backward to get guys, and how they end up prioritizing boyfriends over real friends. Penny thinks she might be crazy for saying these things--but soon a few other girls are inspired, and a movement is born. Girls are soon thronging to The Lonely Hearts Club (named after the Sgt. Pepper’s band) and Penny finds herself near legendary for her nondating ways--which is too bad, since the leader of The Lonely Hearts Club has found a certain boy she can’t help but like...
In the beginning, Penny is recounting to the reader the story of her summer and why she has decided to start her Lonely Hearts Club, with a membership of one person. As a mom, I wanted to wring her neck for her actions. But as I was discussing this part with my best friend, we got on to the topic of when we were that age which brought a sudden (and very scary) understanding (and maybe a need to lock my daughter away in a high tower when she hits the puberty years.)From a broken-hearted perspective, though, I totally got what Penny was saying. Girls are very silly when it comes to boys, no matter the age. It is a sad, almost universal truth. But she has a strong mind and isn't going to let herself get carried away again. The club soon becomes about supporting each other, not only to deal with the heartaches, but also, and maybe more importantly in achieving individual goals.
The chapter titles come from Beatles' songs (titles and/or lyrics) and as such, make you want to sing the songs as you read. It's a great way to remind people of how great these songs are but also sharing with the younger generation some awesome musical history, too.
The Lonely Hearts Club is a cute book with a strong message to teenage girls: to stay true to themselves first. What a fun read!