Fly on the Wall: how one girl saw EVERYTHING by e. lockhart

fly on the wallWhen sixteen year old Gretchen Yee casually wishes to be a fly on the wall of the boys’ locker room in order to see if they really are as moronic as they seem, she never expects the powers that be to take her up on it. But lo and behold, suddenly Gretchen (who loves Spiderman and has been reading The Metamorphasis by Kafka) has sprouted multiple legs, wings, and antennae. She has become exactly what she wished for, and in the week she calls the boys’ locker room home, when she’s not fighting the overwhelming fear that she may never be human again, she learns some very interesting facts about the opposite sex. Gretchen sees all their faults, flaws, and surprising strengths; sees her crush Titus stand up to bully Shane, sees boys get beat up as they shower up, and finds out first hand that they are as obsessed with their “gerkins” as girls are with their “biscuits.” Speaking of which, will Gretchen ever get her own “biscuits” back, and finally be able to tell Titus how much she digs him? It’s great to watch life from the wall, but when it’s time to come down, you have to act on what you’ve learned. Jewish/Chinese-American Gretchen, compulsive cartooner and artificial redhead, is a breath of fresh punk air in a pinky blush world of chickety-chick lit. I would totally love this bad-ass little pink book, even if it wasn’t lovingly set in my adopted hometown of NYC, and didn’t mention one of my favorite places of all time, The Angelika Film Center.

6 thoughts on “Fly on the Wall: how one girl saw EVERYTHING by e. lockhart

  1. All of Lockhart’s books are like that–so funny yet so real. I also highly recommend Dramarama and The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks (both are reviewed on RR)

  2. I liked the book a lot, it really made me laugh. My boyfriend read the book also and didn’t like it as much, but he did laugh at parts. He asked if I would have enjoyed the book if the genders were reversed (a boy peeping on girls)? I said no. He called me a hypocrite because I did not want to hear all about “biscuits” and little “fuzzy tacos.”

  3. Well, no one likes seeing their own gender skewered. That’s just human nature. You might remind your boyfriend that in general, women being treated as sexual objects in popular culture and history is far more common and accepted than men being treated as such. And that’s because men historically have been the arbiters and decision makers when it comes to creating history and making judgements about taste and culture, because women were largely left out of those decisions because they did not have a voice politically. You should really read Lockhart’s latest, The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau Banks. And so should your boyfriend, if you can convince him:)

  4. I was looking for a book to read over Winter Break, I’ll check that one out and make my bf read it too, LOL! Actually, he’s pretty decent (for a guy). He really liked “Fly on the Wall,” and thought it was well written from a girl’s point of view (although he didn’t like the gay bashing—he said that never happens to that extent in any locker room he’s been in). His point to me was that if the gender roles were reversed in the book, it probably would have been labeled as smut and not allowed in our school library. I agree that he is probably right. He just hates “double-standards” (both against boys or girls). In “Fly on the Wall,” a girl is “curious” about a boy’s anatomy, where a boy would be considered a pervert for having the same thoughts. Such is life, I say. I showed him your reply and he said you are correct about the past, but he doesn’t believe that he should be punished for things he never did. It’s all good though, he’ll come around if he ever wants to check out these “biscuits.” Plus, I told him that I would let him take me to see the movie version of “Fly on the Wall” when it comes out, he laughed!

  5. Ash, thanks for sharing both your and your boyfriend’s thoughts on the book. I can’t wait to hear what you two think of Frankie. I hope you both continue to visit Reading Rants and use it to find good books to read and fight over:)

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