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Beyond Clueless

Review

Beyond Clueless

When Marty Sullivan finished eighth grade, her parents told her that they had enrolled her in an all girls Catholic school. Marty worries that she’ll have no friends, but luckily, she finds a place in her middle school best friend’s, Jimmy’s, friend group.  When her school announces auditions for its musical, “Into the Woods”, Marty convinces all her new friends to try out. BEYOND CLUELESS follows Marty through the rehearsals and production of “Into the Woods” as she juggles her relationship with her parents, a new love interest and some shaky friendships. 
 
As a high school student, I found BEYOND CLUELESS to be a very relatable book. I easily identified with Marty’s relationship with her parents --- it can be difficult to deal with parents in a productive and kind manner. Marty does things that both help and harm her relationship with them, and I know that after reading BEYOND CLUELESS, I've gained new tools to take into my family life. Marty also deals with her friendships in a very mature manner. Even though she makes mistakes, she is very good at mending her friendships and restoring positivity in her life. 
 
Linas Alsenas managed to write a book that was both unique and understandable. He taught me the basics of musical theatre while entertaining me for over 200 pages.
 
In addition, I really enjoyed reading about Marty's interest in her school musical. I don’t often find books about theater that I can understand, since I’m not experienced in that world. However, author Linas Alsenas managed to write a book that was both unique and understandable. He taught me the basics of musical theatre while entertaining me for over 200 pages.
 
Although BEYOND CLUELESS is written for young adult readers, I wouldn’t have felt comfortable with its word choice and topics until high school. Overall though, BEYOND CLUELESS is a fantastic novel and I really enjoyed reading it. I know that it has helped me reevaluate my interpersonal relationships and has given me new tools which I will implement in my life. 

Reviewed by Aliza M., Teen Board Member on August 19, 2015

Beyond Clueless
by Linas Alsenas