Summary: Luisa Perez is a sophomore in high school and probably one of the only students who has zero school spirit. Luisa and her friends work hard at avoiding all extracurricular activities. In a school with nine other sophomores named Luisa Perez (that is one diverse high school!), this Luisa does not particularly stand out. And she likes it that way. Except for the fact that she would like a boyfriend. However she doesn't think being an anonymous columnist for the school paper will help her in this respect so she's less-than-thrilled that her English teach volunteered her. even though Luisa views the column with trepidation, she decides that she does want to go to college and therefore she will need to put something on her college applications. Luisa's first assignment is to report on a battle of the sexes to see who can raise the most money for their school (the prize is getting an extra long winter break). Luisa will report on all events from the female point of view and an anonymous male columnist will report on events from the male perspective. Soon the columnists themselves are trading barbs back and forth about gender roles and relationships with the opposite gender. Luisa does not want to lose this battle, even though finding out who the male columnist is may ruin one of the best relationships she's ever had.
My Thoughts: Obviously I loved the high energy of the columns. There are plenty of (mostly clean) innuendos, insults and retorts thrown about. A battle between genders is always intense and fun to read about and this one did not disappoint. One of the best parts of the book is trying to guess who the male columnist is. It's not easy and while it becomes clear towards the end who is NOT the columnist, I didn't expect the big reveal. I thought the whole time that it was the first guy. The relationships Luisa has with family and friends are borderline three dimensional. The characters are developed but not quite fully there. Luisa, Grace and their mother have issues but these issues are never addressed head on so there is no resolution or goal setting. I really liked Paz though. He was the typical rough-exterior-soft-interior guy and I was rooting for him and Grace to work out (and for him to stop picking on Luisa). Luisa does become a character that is easier to identify with as she tries to balance four (!) different guys, she struggles with self-esteem and going too fast.
Overall: I finished this book in two days. It was a fun read because it was nice to remember how fun and not so fun high school events were. I actually loved this book and it kept me guessing who the boy columnist was the whole time reading it. Love anything romantic and anything that has a realistic teenage view on it.