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What My Mother Doesn't Know

Review

What My Mother Doesn't Know

There have been a lot of books written in verse lately. Sonya Sones was one of the first, and still the best. Her first book, STOP PRETENDING: What Happened When My Big Sister Went Crazy was a deep, sad and moving book. WHAT MY MOTHER DOESN'T KNOW is a little different --- it's just as good, just not nearly as sad.

Sophie is 15 and as interested in boys as the rest of us. She finally gets asked out by Dylan, the boy of her dreams, and totally knows it's true love. But then she starts noticing weirdness. Like she's taller than him, he actually watches the movie on their dates, and he doesn't want her telling his parents she's Jewish. Sophie doesn't feel right about Dylan, but she also likes him and doesn't want to end it. In an attempt to find something else, Sophie begins an online romance, and I won't even tell you how that turns out! Let's just say it gives her the push she needs to move on from Dylan to...Murph.

But liking Murph turns out to be a whole lot harder than liking Dylan. To put it bluntly, Murph is a total dork --- he's so uncool that people say, "Don't be such a Murph," when they mean "Don't be such a geek." So why is Sophie thinking of him every minute? And how is she going tell her friends that she likes the biggest loser in school? Deep down she knows that if she doesn't come clean with her feelings for Murph she'll be as bad as everyone else who makes fun of him --- but still, it won't be easy.   

WHAT MY MOTHER DOESN'T KNOW is an honest and heartbreaking book about a girl being true to herself, trusting her friends, and having the strength to love what makes her heart happy. Sones's lovely poems are so good that I'd say she must be a poet first and a storyteller second --- except that her story is also that good! Sones really captures the nervousness of dating a guy, the way friends can get jealous, the sorrow at realizing that you just don't like him anymore, and finding the strength to love what makes your heart happy. We should all be so brave.

Reviewed by Kate Torpie on October 1, 2001

What My Mother Doesn't Know
by Sonya Sones

  • Publication Date: May 7, 2013
  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
  • ISBN-10: 1442493852
  • ISBN-13: 9781442493858