“Not on the Agenda” by Morgan Marjek
Published by Morgan Marjek on March 22, 2016
Genre: Teen & Young Adult
Length: 161 pages
Description: Alice Harper is finally right where she wants to be- a senior, and the president of Student Council at Lincoln High School. She’s been waiting to plan the perfect prom for four years and nothing is going to stand in her way.
Until Jake Markovits, long-time neighbor and noted juvenile delinquent, joins her committee and things immediately start to go awry. Suddenly, he’s everywhere, and they clash from the very beginning- Alice believes in her color-coded agenda and schedules, and Jake believes in getting into as much trouble as possible.
Alice definitely doesn’t have time for drama and believes that “opposites attract” is something that only happens in bad romantic comedies. But when Jake shows that he might be more than just a frequent visitor to the principal’s office, Alice might discover that she left just one thing off her agenda- love.
“Not on the Agenda” by Morgan Marjek is a young adult book about a teenage girl named Alice entering her senior year in high school with a very clear, strategic plan for her life. However, she wasn’t expecting all of the distractions and obstacles her neighbor, Jake, poses just by entering her social circle.
While I may be a bit older than the intended audience, I thought it was an amusing story that will be well-received among the young adult set as well as an entertaining book for the older crowd looking for something short, simple, and sweet.
Morgan Marjek does a decent job of capturing teenage girls in high school, portraying the emotional roller-coaster and stress that comes with senior year. Alice struggles to maintain control of herself and her feelings while desperately needing to manage every situation around her. At the same time, there seems to be an underlying insecurity in herself. While Alice is a confident, authoritative leader with an undoubtedly bright future ahead, she doesn’t see herself outside of her rigorous academic realm and especially not in a romantic way.
Overall, I thought that “Not on the Agenda” did a good job of exploring what it’s like to be a teenage girl in high school, balancing the logistics of school and planning a future with the underlying drama of high school, dealing with friendships and boys. I enjoyed the take on Alice’s character being so driven and meticulous, while still allowing her to lose her cool at the slightest infraction. On the flip side, the unrealistic male characters seem to be taken from fairy tale daydreams rather than real life experience, but considering the reader demographic of this book, it works well to propel the story and makes it enjoyable.
“Not on the Agenda” by Morgan Marjek is a fun, fast-paced young adult novel. It’s a fairly easy read and a great book to take to the beach or sandwich between heavier genres.