The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E Lockhart was first published in the US back in 2008. I’m delighted that it has been released by Hot Key Books in the UK. (You have read her novel We Were Liars haven’t you?)
With 15 year old Frankie facing her first year away from home, this is going to appeal to fans of the boarding school genre.
Frankie is a plucky, likeable character who is finding her feet. By the conclusion of the novel she’s certainly found them … and proved herself to be a force to be reckoned with.
The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks opens with a confession from female protagonist Frankie for being the ‘mastermind’ behind ‘mal-doings’ and ‘disruptions’ which took place at Alabaster Preparatory Academy.
‘I am not asking that you indulge my behaviour; merely that you do not dulge it without considering its context.’
Note: do not rush to the dictionary to double check ‘dulge’, all will become clear.
The discovery of her boyfriend’s male-only secret society, prompts Frankie to emerge as one confident and clever female character. From a distance she manipulates the ‘Order of the Basset Hounds’, masterminding a series of ingenious pranks after which she proudly stands back listening to academy members ‘argue, speculate, and wonder’ at ‘something she had made happen.’
Whilst the whole tone and premise is very different from We Were Liars, what Frankie does is to confirm Lockhart’s ability to form incredibly interesting characters the reader can not help but become attached to, in spite of their flaws.
The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks is filled with an array of quirky characters (loved Zada & Trish), excellent dialogue and an intriguing social commentary that will certainly appeal to the 14+ age group.