This May End Badly, by Samantha Markum
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Publisher: Wednesday Books
Release Date: April 12, 2022
Length: 384 pages
Times Read: Once
Pranking mastermind Doe and her motley band of Weston girls are determined to win the century-long war against Winfield Academy before the clock ticks down on their senior year. But when their headmistress announces that The Weston School will merge with its rival the following year, their longtime feud spirals into chaos.
To protect the school that has been her safe haven since her parents’ divorce, Doe puts together a plan to prove once and for all that Winfield boys and Weston girls just don’t mix, starting with a direct hit at Three, Winfield’s boy king and her nemesis. In a desperate move to win, Doe strikes a bargain with Three’s cousin, Wells: If he fake dates her to get under Three’s skin, she’ll help him get back his rightful family heirloom from Three.
As the pranks escalate, so do her feelings for her fake boyfriend, and Doe spins lie after lie to keep up her end of the deal. But when a teacher long suspected of inappropriate behavior messes with a younger Weston girl, Doe has to decide what’s more important: winning a rivalry, or joining forces to protect something far more critical than a prank war legacy.
This May End Badly is a story about friendship, falling in love, and crossing pretty much every line presented to you—and how to atone when you do.
Hello my name is Katie and I am complete trash for this book.
♥ I loved this book so much, and I have so, so much to say. And most of it is so, so nonsensical.
Starting with: RAISE YOUR HAND IF YOU EVER SAW THE BRILLIANT 1998 FILM ALL I WANNA DO (aka Strike! aka The Hairy Bird)
It has an outstanding cast, (Kirsten Dunst! Rachael Leigh Cook, Monica Keena! Gaby Hoffman! Heather Matarazzo! Lynn Redgrave! Vincent Kartheiser! Matthew Lawrence! Hayden Christensen! Shawn Ashmore!) I mean truly who else are you looking for. It takes place in 1963 and is about a woman’s boarding school that might go co-ed and the girls who try to stop it, mainly by pranks aimed at making the boys look bad. It is hilarious and thoughtful and frankly I don’t know why it wasn’t more popular.
This was one of my favorites back in the heyday of late 90’s teen movies which we have never recovered from as a society and which the film industry has never been able to reproduce.
Anyway this book gave me strong All I Wanna Do vibes and I was not mad about it.
♥ Doe (short for Dorothy) is our main character here, and she’s fabulous. She’s flawed, she’s stubborn, she is COMPLETELY in her own way and totally uninterested in getting out of it. But she’s also just a girl trying to figure out what life after high school will look like, how she’ll survive without her girls by her side every day, and wondering what she’ll do with all the free time she currently dedicates to pranking the Winfield boys.
The friendships were fantastic. Doe and her three friends have been friends forever, but they aren’t afraid to call each other out when one of them is wrong. Wells has his own group, made up largely (completely?) of his cousins. I’ve seen some criticism of Three and his nickname, but listen, I knew a guy who was also something the third and managed to get his nickname down to Trey, because très is three in Spanish and that almost sounds like Trey so you know what? Boys with money are weird.
♥ Doe and Wells do some great fake dating that they pretend isn’t becoming more and more real by the day. They very clearly have feelings for each other but they’re never gonna admit it, so instead it’s just a slowwwww burn all the way through.
♥ Also? This book is just funny. It’s not jokes I can necessarily capture for you, it’s more that the whole vibe is hilarious. The way they talk to each other, the banter, the terms of endearment. The sex talk from Wells’ mom when they aren’t even actually dating? I died.
♥ There is so much more to talk about, but you just have to read this one. It’s my absolute favorite of 2022 so far, I can’t recommend it enough. Did this review make sense? I’m sure it did not, usually the more I like a book the worse my review is!
So! In conclusion, buy this book, read this book, and go watch All I Wanna Do.