Bad Habits by Flynn Meaney takes place at a Catholic boarding school in Wisconsin. I’m not saying it sounds like a hellish place. No offense Wisconsin but your winters are harsh.
Alex Heck is the type of rebellious teenager that I wished I had the guts to be in the 90s. She’s not scared to speak her mind or say “Vagina” to anyone. Slowly but surely, my bravery surfaced. So now, I can type or say vagina. All day with saying vagina. No apologies.
Alex has a purple mohawk so she does remind me of one of my kids. At this very moment, my kid has purple hair and is probably posting about social injustice on social media. If Alex was an actual person, I’d like to think I would be her partner in crime. BFFs in rebellion. We could keep each other’s mohawks maintained.
Sometimes Alex takes things a bit too far but she has a lot of experience with helping less knowledgable kids how to get out of trouble. Her disciplinary file is no joke. It is substantial. She’s ready to get the heck out of this boarding school with all of their rules and religion.
So Alex has this brilliant idea to get kicked out. Why not put on a production of “The Vagina Monologues”? If it doesn’t go through, then protest until they send her packing. I will have to say that she might have underestimated the patience of the nuns and priests. They can wait her out and wear out her resolve. Or can they?
I think Alex learns as much as she also teaches. Her main goal in putting on “The Vagina Monologues” besides expulsion is just to inform young people about sex education and to learn about their own bodies. Also, she wants people, especially women, to own their own bodies. Take charge ladies! I agree completely with Alex. Learn about how your body works so no one can tell you wrong information. Ask your doctor a million questions if you have to. You are paying for care, which also includes information.
I laughed so much while reading this book. I laughed so much that my kids were like “What are you laughing at?” This book is also thought-provoking.
There are so many issues with people not being informed about sex, health, women’s rights, etc. How can one person possibly make a difference? It is possible. One person can inspire hundreds, who can inspire so many more. It only takes one match to start a fire.
If you are rebellious, say vagina all day in a non-derogatory way or need a bit of feminist humor then you will love this book so much. Personally, I love the cover. I need it in poster size as soon as possible. Who cares if I’m closer to 50 than 15?
Sorry Sister Franette, I don’t know if you will totally appreciate this book. There are lots of shenanigans that aren’t approved by the church. Maybe we could send a donation to a charity as penance? Please continue to pray for us poor sinners, who are sorry but not exactly sorry. We have bad habits, you know. I wonder is nuns have bad habits or just wear regular habits. Oh yeah, nun jokes.
Flynn Meaney is the author of The Boy Recession and Bloodthirsty. She studied marketing and French at the University of Notre Dame, where she barely survived the terrifying array of priests and nuns, campus ghosts, and bone-crushing athletes who inspired Bad Habits. Since completing a very practical MFA in Poetry, she works for a French company and travels often between New York (when she’s in the mood for bagels) and Paris (when she’s in the mood for croissants).
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- I received this book from The Write Reads, Penguin Teen, and NetGalley as part of The Ultimate Book Tour. All opinions are my own. Obviously.
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