(Review)Surviving Hig School

Title: Surviving High School
Author: M. Doty
Pub Date: September 4, 2012
Publisher: Poppy (a division of Little Brown)
Pages: 272

Source: I received a copy of this when I attended BEA 2012 from the publisher.

What’s the secret to surviving high school?

Freshman Emily Kessler needs perfect grades, a rigorous training schedule, and record-breaking swim times. She survives by limiting her fun to lunch with her best friend Kimi and the rare Friday-night sleepover. But when she starts to fall for Twin Branches High’s heartthrob, and secrets about her sister, Sara, start to surface, Emily begins to question the strict path her life is on. Maybe there is more to high school than just studying and swimming. But if she breaks a few rules, will she survive the consequences?

The hit mobile game Surviving High School comes to life in an original novel about perfection, failure, and following your dreams.


When I was making my list of books I would love to get at BEA this was one of them and I was so happy that I was able to pick this up. It sounded really good. Well I read this in almost one sitting and it was good. There was so much happening that it sucked you and made you want to read it to find out what was happening.

The book is based on the mobile game Surviving High School. Which I have never played or heard of until I came across the book. I am currently looking for that app as we speak.

Emily is just beginning high school and she has the weight of the world on her shoulders. Not only is she trying to get through school with perfect grades but she is also having to train rigorously to live up to the expectations of an Olympic dream. One that her dead sister, Sara was trying to achieve.

You can almost see that this really isn’t Emily’s dream but that of her coach/dad. Emily is trying to fit in and be a normal teen and to perhaps do all the things that Sara wasn’t able to do or did she?

Emily tries to be a normal teen dispute the rigorous training schedule and that includes having lunch daily with her best friend, Kimi and having the montly sleep over. Its when she spots and falls for the cute boy, Ben that things begin to change for Emily. Emily begins to find out secrets about Sara that she never knew and this sets in motion an almost new Emily.

Emily begins to question things and before long she is sneaking out with Ben, breaking the rules and having fun like a normal teenager.

As you know sooner or later you will get caught and that is exactly what happens. Will this be a good thing or a bad thing for Emily?

I really enjoyed the book and it brought back so many memories of high school for me. Its hard to fit in as a new comer but probably more so when everyone knows your sister. That sometimes could be a good thing or a bad thing.

I have to admit that I really liked Ben. I thought he was perfect for Emily because he made her see that there was more to life and she could be who she wanted to be.

I was pleasantly surprised by Nick and wasn’t sure about him at the beginning because I thought he was pretty shady but as the story progressed I really liked him and being able to find out what really happened to Sara was nice because it was no longer a mystery about why and how she died.

I am curious to read future books by M. Doty should he choose to write more and I did find out that there is a sequel that will come out later in 2013. So excited for that.

He also has another book available but its only on Kindle and its called Almost Kings along with a dvd movie of the book as well.

copyright 2010, Cindy (Cindy’s Love Of Books)
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