Wednesday, 6 February 2013

A Month With April-May by Edyth Bulbring

Publisher: Hot Key Books
Format: ARC
Published: 7th February 2013
Number of Pages: 224
Book: For Review*
Genre: Real-to-Life Fiction, Contemporary, Comedy, Coming-of-Age, Romance, YA
Recommended Age: 12+
Contains: Smoking, Mad Hijinks
No Alcohol, Drug References

'Life is not a bowl of cherries. Suck it up.' On April-May's first day at Trinity College, she has the wrong colour bag, too-bright socks and she gets her favourite novel confiscated for reading it during class. She makes total enemies with the evil Mrs Ho, but she makes total friends with mouth-breather Melly. Then, she meets the gorgeous Seb, loses her entire wardrobe to a hobo and gets branded a sockless trouble-maker. A MONTH WITH APRIL-MAY is a one-eyebrow-raised account of a teenager's trials and tribulations as she navigates a new school, a new family situation and a whole new way of life.

“I should have known from the first moment I met her: it was either me or Mrs Ho.  One of us was going to have to go.”
Everyone knows staring a new school is hard.  And April-May February may have just had the worst first day in the history of ever. 
First, her bag was the wrong colour.  Then she got yelled at (again) for having too bright socks.  Then she makes a new worst enemy in the form of Mrs Ho, the evilest person ever.  Next her clothes get nicked.  And on top of it all, she's totally addicted to Twilight and can't get her hands on the second book (begin panic attack now!).  Yup, day one, and already she has the big, fat label of 'Trouble Maker'. 
On the bright side, she does have a new best friend in Melly.  There's also a totally hot guy on the scene (he's called Seb and might just be her own Edward). 
Who said childhood was innocent and carefree?  Whoever did obviously never had to live through Trinity College.  Or have a to-the-end battle against the persistent Mrs Ho. 
Or have a freaking calendar as a name! 
I do love funny books, me.  I read so many tearjerkers and dystopias and paranormals, so down-to-earth funnies are always more than welcome.  Of course, A Month With April-May wasn't overly down-to-earth, instead being more bonkers, kind of like the Georgia Nicolson series – something I loved!  It was completely barmy and bundles of fun.  I'll admit, there are some darkish moments and bits where I wanted to smack April-May on the back of her head, but I stormed right through the book in a single sitting, gobbling it up.  I can't wait for the next in the series! 
I just adored all the characters in this book – they were all absolutely mad!  Since the book was only short, we didn't really get to know everyone overly well, but I liked loads of them anyway.  And I loved April-May, even if she was an evil, sneaky, crafty, sore-losing genius!  She was just hilarious – cheeky, funny, witty – everything you could want in a teen lead!  I found myself instantly falling in love with the wacky April-May – she was just brilliant!  Plus, her evil-genius moments were pretty scary-brilliant!  I loved Melly, her sweet bestie – she was the best bestie a girl could have!  And Mrs Ho was a brilliant character – poor woman, the lady was in charge of a sinking ship and had an evil genius as an arch nemesis!  No wonder she was tightly wound, hey?!  I can’t wait to see more of her.  Seb was a bad boy – I don’t really know what April-May saw in him: I think she just wanted an Edward – but what teen doesn't?  I also liked Fluffy, her dad.  He was kind of scattered but was really sweet and loving.  Speaking of, April-May's family was insane and so, so dysfunctional.  I'm sure people will be able to relate to April-May's situation – she felt like she had to be two people for her parents, like being pulled apart.  And all she wanted was for them to be together again.  I felt so sorry for her – and very impressed by her crafty get-Mom-and-Fluffy-together-again tactics!
loved Bulbring's voice – it was snarky and funny and so teen.  And I felt like I totally got and loved April-May!  Oh, and I loved all her "Cold Facts" – some of them were really funny and all were so interesting.  I also loved all the Afrikaans words that were scattered about.  And I found April-May's war both amusing and the kind of thing only an evil genius can cook up!  And with the short chapters and non-stop hijinks, I found myself zipping through it – y’know the sort: just one more chapter ...  Dangerous!  And the ending was just perfect – and left me wanting more of April-May's insanity!
I must say, I was kind of expecting a tween book when I picked this one up – I'm not sure why, maybe the length? – but this is a very teen book: I can't wait for the teens of England to be set loose on this one, cause they're gonna love it!  
Now, with a lovably flawed and crafty heroine, a battle of wills between her and a teacher and a series of mad and funny events, A Month With April-May has left me wanting much more time with her!  Perfect for fans of Jess Jordan and Georgia Nicolson, April-May is going to be a huge, huge hit with teen girls.  Yay to April-May!  I'm super excited about your next book - but please be longer!!

Star Rating:
4 Out of 5

Read this book if you liked:
Confessions of Georgia Nicolson by Louise Rennison
Jess Jordan by Sue Limb
Jacqueline Wilson Fans

Challenges It's Taking Part In:

Happy Reading
* This book was received from HotKeyBooks in exchange for an honest review

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