This Is All Your Fault

Feiwel & Friends. Jun. 2020. 304p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781250242341.
Gr 8 Up–A group of misfits must save the one place they all feel a special connection to, the Wild Nights Bookstore and Emporium. In essence, Safi’s book is a retelling of the movie Empire Records: Eli steals petty cash in order to make more money to help the store, Imogen goes into work and shaves her head in the bathroom, a famous author comes on to a teenager and their partner quits because if it, and a fundraiser and rooftop party aim to save the struggling store. Safi sets her novel in a bookshop instead of a music store and brings the story into the 21st century as the store’s employees are able to reach thousands of people in an instant with videos posted to social media. The main characters are from a range of backgrounds including Korean, Mexican American, and Lebanese, and all have some kind of defining trait that stands out: the artist, the bubbly social media influencer, the struggling manager, the math nerd, the screw-up, etc. Safi’s writing style draws readers into the story and makes them feel as if they truly know the characters.
VERDICT This book is a love letter to one of the most popular movies of the ‘90s and will be enjoyed by everyone who wants to fit in and fight for what they believe.

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