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I was a non-blonde cheerleader
Book
2005
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Trade Reviews

  Booklist Review

Gr. 7-10. Sophomore Annisa has moved from New Jersey to Florida, where she gets off on the wrong foot almost immediately, especially with the cheerleading squad. She attracts one girl's boyfriend, moves into another's recently vacated home, and hits a third in the nose with a door. So when she makes the squad, the welcome mat is not exactly out. Her most visible difference is her dark, short hair; even the team's African American coach is a blonde. In generalities, the story is predictable. By the end of the book, Annisa, the narrator, is spouting lines such as, It didn't even matter how we did at regionals on Saturday because at that moment we weren't just a squad. We were friends. Still, the specifics are fun and definitely au courant , as Annisa discovers love, friendship, and backflips as she deals with prank wars, unsupervised parties, and cheerleading crises. Since there's a lot about competitive cheerleading, the pom-pom inclined will especially like this. --Ilene Cooper Copyright 2005 Booklist

  Kirkus Review

The excellent writing in this new offering from Scott, who wrote The V Club (2004) as Kate Brian, belies its silly title. Sophomore Annisa Gobrowski has moved from New Jersey to Florida, and experiences a disastrous first day at Sand Dune High School where every girl in the school is blonde. She makes quick friends with the school outcast and attracts the attention of a wonderful boy, but inadvertently alienates all of the popular girls. Alas, all of them are members of the school's crack cheerleading squad, Annisa's particular enthusiasm. Despite their hostility, she makes the squad, but suffers constant attacks from most of her teammates. Additional problems develop in a prank war with a rival school and slumping grades. The story follows Annisa's efforts to uphold her individuality while trying to make friends. Scott shows incisive insight into the culture of adolescent girls while delivering suspense and well-developed emotional conflicts that should hold young readers' interest throughout. (Fiction. YA) Copyright ©Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Summary
New Jersey transplant and sassy brunette Annisa Gobrowski has a problem-literally everyoneat her Florida high school is blonde. No lack of golden highlights is going to stop Annisa from making the cheerleading squad. But after accidentally breaking the most popular girl in school's nose, and discovering the cheerleaders all hate her, she starts having second thoughts. Is it too much to ask to land a spot on the team, win the heart of her dreamy crush and make tons of new friends? Annisa is on the verge of giving up, but the cheerleader in her just won't let her quit. She may be a little different, but Sand Dune High had better watch out-this non-blonde is here to stay in this hilariously funny new novel.
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