Review: Fly on the Wall by E. Lockhart

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At the Manhattan School of Art and Music, where everyone is unique and everyone is ‘different’, Gretchen Yee feels ordinary. It doesn’t help that she’s known as the girl who sits alone at lunch, drawing pictures of her favourite superhero, just so she won’t have to talk to anyone. Her best (and only real) friend is there for her, but that’s only if she’s not busy – she’s always busy!
It’s no surprise that Gretchen isn’t exactly successful in the boy department. Her ex-boyfriend is a cold-fish-sometimes-flirty ex who she can’t stop bumping into. Plus, she has a massive crush on a boy named, Titus but is too scared to make the first move. One minute he seems like a sensitive guy, the next, he’s a completely different person when he’s with his friends. She can’t seem to figure boys out!
Gretchen has one wish: to be a fly on the wall in the boy’s locker room. What are boys really like? What do they talk about?
This is the story of how one girl’s wish came true.

So, this book is weird. And I mean, it’s really weird. Like, this is literally a story of someone who turns into a fly – and I don’t mean that as a metaphor.

Although I actually really admire E. Lockhart for writing such an interesting story with the girl turning into a fly for almost half of the book. That’s a pretty crazy thing to accomplish.

“People think of hearts when they think of love, but a heart is a bloody organ in the body.”

I wasn’t sure about this book at first, simply because it really took a while to get my head around it. And it did take a while to really get into the story. I spent a good 70 pages learning about Gretchen, her family, friends, school and general life. It also took that long to get used to E. Lockhart’s unique writing style again.

The characters are all pretty interesting and gave good depth to the story. The book is incredibly short (just under 200 pages), and it flew by…but it was also enough for the plot.

“It doesn’t have any emotions.”

Like I mentioned above, E. Lockhart has a very unique style of writing…but I love her for it. This book breaks YA rules, includes some great humorous moments and is incredibly honest. However, I did have a few *tiny* issues. One, Gretchen can come across as kind of…childish? Her collections, obsessions and sometimes just manner and way she talks is just a little strange and doesn’t always read like I expected.

Two, a lot of this book is just about dicks. Like seriously, I’d say about a quarter of this book is just describing boys bodies…and I kind of get why, but it also seemed like quite a large portion of the book.

“It’s like a metaphor for love that has nothing to do with what love actually is.”

Overall? Another great read from E. Lockhart, and it did leave me impressed. It really pushes the boundaries of realism, fantasy and YA, and I love that.

★★★★

-Beth

May your shelves forever overflow with books! ☽

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2 thoughts on “Review: Fly on the Wall by E. Lockhart

  1. I love We Were Liars so much, and have been wanting to read more of Lockhart’s backlist. I thought the Ruby Oliver books were fun, and I had my eye on this one. I am still trying to stop laughing while thinking about his book about dicks. Please excuse my inner 12 year old. Great review!

    Liked by 1 person

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