Originally published on February 6, 2012.
Bindy Mackenzie is an Australian high school student. She is a
prodigy, a genius, and an incredibly hard worker. She is ranked first in her
class in everything and frankly, she considers herself to be far superior to her
classmates. Bindy is incredibly annoying. Yet underneath her smug, superior
exterior, we find a girl who is both sad and insecure (and has good reasons to
In Year 11 of her schooling, Bindy's school starts and
requires a new course called Friendship and Development (FAD for short). Oh,
the horror! Bindy is placed in a group with seven other students, none of whom
are "her type" of people. Bindy feels that the entire FAD process is a colossal
waste of her time, and she thinks that her seven groupmates are as "poisonous"
as they come.
But as the year goes on, things start to get a little
strange for Bindy. She feels sick all the time. She is exhausted, but she has
terrible nightmares and can't sleep. She starts having problems with her
memory. She loses her motivation, stops doing homework, and starts failing
quizzes.... and doesn't even care. What could possibly be wrong with her? Only
her FAD group can unlock the answers....
The entire book is written in
the form of emails, memos, and journal entries, mostly written by Bindy herself
(but occassional notes from her relatives and FAD group). I struggled a little
with the beginning of the book, simply because the entire thing is written in
Bindy's voice and she is SO annoying. But that really sets the scene for the
changes that occur in her later in the book. It can be a very quick read, as
evidenced by the fact that once I locked myself away in my bedroom, I read over
250 pages (of 491) in one sitting.
While I think this was the weakest of
the four books I've read so far this year, I'd still recommend it to anyone
looking for a quick-ish read with some humor and some unique personality.