Book Review – Moxie by Jennifer Mathieu


Submitted by Ms. Terri

As Moxie opens, sixteen-year-old Vivian Carter is just trying to get through the school year at her small-town Texas high school where the boys–especially those on the football team — seem to get away with anything. Viv and her female classmates try to ignore the fact that they are held to a strict dress code, while the boys get to wear offensive t-shirts. They try to ignore the snide remarks of the football captain (and son of the school principal). They even try to ignore the hallway “bump and grabs,” and sexual harassment that the school administration turns a blind eye to.

But one day Viv has had enough. Inspired by her mother’s rebellious youth as a punk rock feminist, or Riot Grrrl, Viv creates a zine called Moxie, which she distributes anonymously in the girls’ bathrooms. The zine calls for girls to stand up for their rights and question the lack of action by the administration. It seems like a small step, but Moxie sparks a social movement that Viv could never have imagined.

I loved this book and would definitely recommend it! The characters were very realistic and easy to identify with. I found myself cringing at the way the girls were treated and silently cheering at their efforts to stop it. I especially enjoyed watching Viv battle her fears and grow from a silent observer to the quiet, yet determined creator of real change at her school.

One of the things I love about this book is the hand lettered, collage-based editions of Moxie. I also really enjoyed learning about the zines, music and history of the Riot Grrrl movement of the 1990’s. Before it was even published, Amy Poehler’s production company, Paper Kite, acquired the rights to make the book into a movie. I think it will make an excellent one!

I rated this book:

Leave it on the shelf… 1     2     3     4     5     Must read!

Recommended Age: High School

Find this book at the Vineland Public Library.


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