Louise Rennisons book, Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging: Confessions of Georgia Nicolson is a Michael L. Printz Honor Book for the year 2001. The reader in this light-hearted YA comedy is in for a treat as they journey through fourteen-year-old Georgia's diary. It is laugh-out-loud funny.
Georgia has a crazy cat (Angus), goes to an all girls' school and is absolutely boy crazy (although she does talk about lesbianism quite a bit -- "Am I schizophrenic as well as a lesbian?" page 47.) She thinks her parents are stupid, especially her dad (... mentality of a Teletubby, only not so developed.) The setting is primarily her bedroom at her home in Britain, but school, parties and shops come into play. She is British and side-splitting terms are sprinkled throughout the book, such as "snogging" for kissing. To fully get the comedic effect one must go to the back of the book and look up the terms in the glossary -- a most helpful addition. Her best friend, Jas, is equally as boy crazy.
Georgia doesn't like her appearance, stating on page 53, "I am Mrs. Ugly. Small, swollen eyes, hair plastered to my skull, HUGE red nose. I look like a tomato in a school uniform." She expresses typical teenage fears, mostly about her appearance and how boys perceive her. Her first kiss is from a boy who offers free kissing lessons.
The plot of the book appears to be "getting the guy." She is in love with Robbie, a seventeen year old "Sex God" (SG for short.) In the end he kisses her at a party, dumps his beautiful girlfriend and it seems to be a happily-ever-after ending for Georgia. She is looking forward to the summer romance as school is just about out for the year. Her mother comes into her room (last paragraph) and announces they are going to New Zealand for the summer where her father is checking out jobs. Oh, the angst!
A review in School Library Journal, 2000, had this to say about the book:
"It will take a sophisticated reader to enjoy the wit and wisdom of this charming British import, but those who relish humor will be satisfied. Fresh, lively, and engaging."
Even though this book is easy to read (lots of white space), I would agree that it is for a more 'sophisticated' reader. Some of the topics, although they are portrayed hilariously in the book, are serious topics. There are references to lesbianism, incest, multiple sex partners (in her dream), breast touching, menstruation ("have the painters in") among others. The cover is colorful and appealing, but a parent of a younger teen may want to preview its contents before their daughter reads it. I enjoyed this book but will use careful judgment as to whom I will recommend it to.
Rennison, Louise. 1999. ANGUS, THONGS AND FULL FRONTAL SNOGGING: CONFESSIONS OF GEORGIA NICOLSON. New York: HarperCollins. ISBN: 0-06-447227-2.
Reynolds, Angela A. 2000. Angus, thongs and full frontal snogging: confessions of Georgia Nicholson. School Library Journal 46(7):109. In EBSCOHost [database online]. Available from http://ezproxy.twu.edu:2048/login?url=http://search.epnet.com/login.asp?profile=web&defaultdb=tfh. Accessed 9 October 03.