Jessica Darling’s It List #1 | Megan McCafferty | Book Review

It thrills me to no end that middle school girls are going to get to grow up with Jessica Darling. Somehow, this gives me optimism for the future. Like many of you, I did not read the Jessica Darling books until high school — well, for me, the were published in high school and I actually totally only read ‘Second Helpings‘ because of course, my school library did not have them. Sigh. ANYWAYS, needless to say, I eventually read the series in kind of a fever pitch a few years ago. Keeping with tradition, I readJessica Darling’s It List #1: The (Totally Not) Guaranteed Guide to Popularity, Prettiness & Perfectionin a sort of frenzy as well, all in lines at Book Expo America 2013, because instead of making friends and talking to people in line, I would rather do my own thing and read my book.

Jessica Darling's It List by Megan McCafferty | Good Books And Good Wine

Jessica is about to start seventh grade, middle school. She does not want to be a total dork so she turns to her older sister Bethany for advice, LOL. And oh, the advice Bethany writes down for Jessica is HILARIOUS, well it will be hilarious if you’ve read the adult books. Those new to the series probably won’t get why it’s funny (because Jessica is so radically different from the advice she tries to follow). So, Bethany gives Jessica an ‘It-List’ telling her to:Wear something different every day; Make the CHEER TEAM!!!; Pick your first boyfriend wisely; and Stick with the IT clique. And of course, we the readers get to see all the cringeworthy outcomes as Jessica tries to follow the list. If you were that awkward kid in middle school or if you totally already are RIGHT NOW,Jessica Darling’s It Listby Megan McCafferty is totally the book for you.

I think if you’ve ever been curious about what has made JD the way that she is, this book kind of explains it. Like, she isn’t cynical yet. She has not even become best friends with Hope yet, but SOON. Soon that will happen and readers, I know I can’t wait to read that. It’s kind of funny to see Jessica a bit clueless as to how the popularity thing works, even when she is sitting at the popular table, she’s still on the fringes. I know that I keep using the terms hilarious and funny and you guys the whole reason behind that is I can still relate to Jessica, even middle school Jessica. I mean, heck even fitting in at work sometimes feels like it requires an It List. Also? Megan McCafferty seems to be great at writing the experiences of a smart girl who might not have the greatest social skills.

This review is totally short yes, but honestly do you need thousands of words telling you how greatJessica Darling’s It List is? Or would you just rather read it for yourself? Seriously in the time that you have spent reading this review, chances are you could have finished a couple chapters of the book OR at least ordered it or purchased it. Honestly, if you can’t get enough of Jessica Darling, the Clueless Crew, Marcus Flutie and Jessica’s journaling, you need to get your hands on this book. AND IF YOU ARE NEW TO THE SERIES, if you are an adult or a teenager, read theSloppy Firsts books first, if you are an actual middle schooler, readJessica Darling’s It List, there’s something here for EVERY contemporary fan.

Disclosure: Obtained At BEA 2013

Other reviews of Jessica Darling’s It List #1 by Megan McCafferty:

Anna Reads – “plenty of laughter and honesty
Alluring Reads – “full of laughs
Slatebreakers – “Do not fear, Jessica Darling lovers

About April (Books&Wine)

April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.


  1. This sounds completely awkward and hilarious! XD
    Sassy @ My Never Ending Pile recently posted..Waiting on WednesdayMy Profile

  2. My favorite, forever & ever
    Anna recently posted..Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith ReviewMy Profile

  3. I’m not even in middle school anymore (*cough*20-something*cough*) but Jessica Darling is still my favorite.
    Amanda recently posted..Book Review: “The Wood of Suicides” by Laura Elizabeth WoolettMy Profile

  4. I’ve never read the Jessica Darling series! I probably should, considering how much you and a few other blogger friends I know love it. (And it does sound mighty entertaining!) This MG spin-off sounds delightful though, but I’ll take your advice and read the original series first 😉
    Alexa S. recently posted..Year of Mistaken Discoveries – Eileen Cook (Review)My Profile

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