Review: Scarlett Epstein Hates It Here

Author: Anna Breslaw
Genre: YA Contemporary
Page Length: 288 Pages
Publication Date: April 19th, 2016
Publisher: Razorbill
Source: ARC via Publisher
Goodreads | Amazon
Meet Scarlett Epstein, BNF (Big Name Fan) in her online community of fanfiction writers, world-class nobody at Melville High. Her best (read: only) IRL friends are Avery, a painfully shy and annoyingly attractive bookworm, and Ruth, her weed-smoking, possibly insane seventy-three-year-old neighbor.

When Scarlett’s beloved TV show is canceled and her longtime crush, Gideon, is sucked out of her orbit and into the dark and distant world of Populars, Scarlett turns to the fanfic message boards for comfort. This time, though, her subjects aren’t the swoon-worthy stars of her fave series—they’re the real-life kids from her high school. Scarlett never considers what might happen if they were to find out what she truly thinks about them...until a dramatic series of events exposes a very different reality than Scarlett's stories, forever transforming her approach to relationships—both online and off.
Scarlett Epstein Hates It Here is a breath of fresh air with a hilarious and snarky main character, the most authentic portrayal of teen life I've ever read, and heartwarming, subtle themes.

While reading this book, I was tittering with laughter throughout. Scarlett is so funny and creative. Her actions were so understandable, and I really sympathized with her plights. As a newbie writer myself, I loved seeing Scarlett's evolving feelings towards embracing her writing and literature in general. The voice is clear and exceptionally written. I felt as though I were actually in Scarlett's mind throughout this book. Scarlett's relationships with various secondary characters are also explored, and I love the development in all of these areas.

There is a dash of romance in this story, and I love that it doesn't overshadow the story or bring about Scarlett's growth. Also her love interest, Gideon, is kind of a jerk in some parts of the novel. I proudly cheered Scarlett on as she calls him out on all of his misdeeds. YES. THANK YOU. So often in YA, the main character completely dismisses all the bad things her love interest has done. Communication is key, and Scarlett and Gideon excel at that.

Another aspect I was wildly impressed with was Anna's firm grasp on teen life and their insecurities and mannerisms. She really understands what it's like to be a teen and everything that goes with it. The dialogue felt so real. The urge to be popular and the feeling of never fitting in were discussed too. I so admire Anna for tackling this and doing it right. This book is perfect for all readers but most especially for teens. There is so much that we can learn from this novel. I loved how much this book stresses the importance of trying to understand people instead of just judging.

The fanfiction elements were highly entertaining and fascinating to read. I loved how Anna introduced us to the fandom and fanfiction world. I was pleasantly surprised to see we got to read part of Scarlett's fanfiction! I also really liked how it mirrored what was happening in her life. The fanfiction story was just as engaging and fascinating as the book it was within. Anna's writing is fluid and charming, and her story's pacing was great. Also this book really puts the 'L' in LOL.

I found much more depth and humor in this book than I'd bargained for. This book is a quick, fun read that I urge you all to read!

Rachel is a teenaged unapologetic fangirl and perfectionist.

She loves reading for the escape it gives from reality and enjoys crying over books, swooning over characters, and laughing out loud over funny lines. She is a semi-recovering Netflix addict and a middle child of three.

You can find her on Twitter @yaperfectionist & Goodreads.


  1. I can't wait to get my hands on this one! I have heard nothing but good things from it and I am VERY excited to read it! Thanks for another great review, Rachel.

    Jamie @ Books and Ladders

  2. This looks really good! I'm glad to hear it actually portrays teen life accurately. There are so many books about teens that miss the mark entirely. Definitely going on my TBR! Great review, Rachel!

    Laura @BlueEyeBooks

  3. I really like the sound of this book especially since it portrays life well. I also like how it stresses the idea of not judging people. Must get my hands on this one. Great review, Rachel!

    czai @ the Blacksheep Project

  4. I'm reading it right now, and thoroughly loving it!! Especially the humor... it's spot-on! :)

  5. I have this one high on my TBR. I have only heard good buzz. Great review!

  6. Gah! This sounds fun. I'm adding it to my TBR now. Thanks for the review!


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