Parents' Guide to

How to be Popular

By Kate Pavao, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Predictable book with a positive point; tweens OK.

How to be Popular Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 11+

Based on 3 parent reviews

age 11+

OK for mature kids...

My daughter saw this book in the local bookstore, read the back, and begged me to buy it. We decided I would read it first, and if it was OK, she would read it also. Its not a bad book. The kids swear a lot, and it mentions "Turkish Sex" but i think it is appropriate for kids 11 & up. Some people may call this irresponsible, and I sort of agree, so my daughter and I read it together. I taught her not to use fowl language and it is OK. In the end, the main character learns a lesson that is a positive message, although I wouldn't call her a role model. You must TRUST that your kid will read the book and won't go inappropriate. I trusted my kids. What about you?
age 12+

Good for teens and tweens

My daughter read this book and loved it.She's 12 years old and read it for a project in literature. She was mainly concerned with the language. I'm just glad that I taught her to not use that kind of language but she won't repeat it. Thank the Lord. I read the book when it first came out and I loved it.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (3 ):
Kids say (13 ):

Readers will know from the beginning what unpopular Steph will learn as she struggles to hang out with the A-crowd. They'll even know who she'll eventually hook up with (Hint: It's not the school's hot quarterback). They may also wonder how they're supposed to feel about the old book that inspires Steph's popularity plan. Some of the guide's advice is obviously outdated -- the book suggests white kid gloves, for example. But Steph's book also encourages girls to get involved in school activities, smile, and to remember other people's names -- all of which is actually pretty good advice, and does help Steph become popular.

But, even with these holes, readers will find this an entertainting read, and be thrilled when Steph finally figures out what really matters. They may even want to re-read the section where Steph tells Lauren -- the school's queen bee -- to buzz off, because "there are a lot more Steph Landry's in the world -- people who've made fools of themselves in public, people who don't have every hair perfectly in place all the time, people who don't have rich parents who'll buy them a new car every year -- than there are stuck-up beauty queens like you."

Book Details

  • Author: Meg Cabot
  • Genre: Coming of Age
  • Book type: Fiction
  • Publisher: HarperTempest
  • Publication date: August 29, 2006
  • Publisher's recommended age(s): 12 - 17
  • Number of pages: 304
  • Last updated: July 12, 2017

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