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The Unbearable Book Club for Unsinkable Girls

3.15  ·  Rating Details ·  1,068 Ratings  ·  259 Reviews
I'm Adrienne Haus, survivor of a mother-daughter book club. Most of us didn't want to join. My mother signed me up because I was stuck at home all summer, with my knee in a brace. CeeCee's parents forced her to join after cancelling her Paris trip because she bashed up their car. The members of "The Unbearable Book Club," CeeCee, Jill, Wallis, and I, were all going into ...more
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published May 8th 2012 by Delacorte Books for Young Readers
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Community Reviews

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Jul 02, 2012 Lorel rated it it was ok
This book starts off full of promise- it appears to be a rather mocking, more gritty version of the often maudlin "Traveling Pants" series as well as the even more saccharine Mother-Daughter Book Club series for younger readers. Four very different girls are thrown together by their mothers, who met in yoga class. Sounds familiar, doesn't it?

The story is written by Adrienne, as an assignment for her Advanced Placement Literature class. She is 15 and frustrated by an injured knee and the lack of
Apr 11, 2012 Nicola rated it liked it
3.5 stars

I'm really into realistic YA fiction this year! It's not a genre I used to read in all that often but I'm really liking what I've discovered so far. My tastes tend to run the opposite way to a lot of peoples- what other people find silly/boring/underdeveloped, I find fun, light and entertaining. I was hoping The Unbearable Book Club for Unsinkable Girls would be one of those light and cute books (the cover certainly suggests it!) and I think it did deliver.

I really, really liked this b
Apr 06, 2014 Tiyana rated it it was amazing
This book was a really good one. I really liked the personalities of the characters and the message the author conveyed was that friendships sometimes grow in the least expected way, but sometimes the least expected friendships are also the most true.
Dec 30, 2014 Amber rated it it was amazing
This was a pretty good book. I enjoyed reading it. It is about these girls that their parents force them to do a book club on books they have to read for their school book reports.
Cindy Hudson
Jul 27, 2012 Cindy Hudson rated it liked it
Adrienne is sure her summer is going to be a disaster. Instead of spending it on a wilderness canoe trip in Canada with her best friend, she’s stuck at home in West New Hope, Delaware with a knee injury. And if that isn’t bad enough, her mother is forcing her to be in a mother-daughter book club with girls she would never hang out with. CeeCee is popular and a bit of a spoiled, rich girl, Jill works at the pool and her mother thinks she doesn’t socialize enough, and Wallis is a sort of recluse ...more
Jan 17, 2014 Lauren rated it really liked it
So if you don’t know already, I am doing the United States of YA Challenge from Epicreads. It really isn’t a challenge because all it is a list of one book that takes place in every state in the United States and this year I challenged myself to read every one of them. One of the books on the list was The Unbearable Book Club for Unsinkable Girls by Julie Schumacher.

I was pleasantly surprised by this book! It wasn't what I expected it to be and it even had a plot twist that through me for a bit
Mar 17, 2012 Christiana rated it it was ok
Shelves: teen-fic, high-school
I like the idea of this book more than the execution. I like all the literary references, especially for a big-time reader who reads this book. It's cool to recognize characters of other books when Adrienne remarks on them and inserts them into conversation and her narration. I was interested in reading this book the whole way through (Schmacher does a good job of the chapter endings that make you want to keep reading) but by the end I was kind of underwhelmed.

The characters promise to be more t
Oct 22, 2013 Desertisland rated it it was amazing
Fun for booklovers/bookclubs! Hope there's a sequel (hint there might be: Adrienne's mom--a big fan of Jane Austen--suggests they read some of the latter's books, after the official club ends).

P.S. At least some of the girls in the book club have similarities to Austen heroines: Adrienne's mom tells her daughter she is like impressionable Catherine of NORTHANGER ABBEY. CeeCee shares qualities with EMMA "handsome, clever and rich" (not to mention manipulative), and Jill is adopted for reasons som
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
The opening chapters of this book really appealed to me, and, though I enjoyed the book as a whole, it definitely flagged as the book progressed. This is probably the least effectual book club ever that actually manages to meet up (my friends and I haven't even managed that yet...wah wah). Even so, every mention of a book club makes me desperately want to discuss literature in person. I loved the sections where they actually discussed the books, but these were unfortunately brief.

The main issue
Jun 02, 2012 Amie rated it it was ok
The Unbearable Book Club for Unsinkable Girls is written in the form of a creative essay for an A.P. English class. Adrienne Haus is summarizing the reading list and therefore her summer, for her teacher. Each chapter begins with the definition of a literary term, but not the type of definition you would expect. Instead the definitions are snarky and witty, for example: “subplot—This is sort of like the plot’s younger brother, the one who tags along behind the big kids who are hogging all the ...more
Aug 13, 2012 Terri rated it it was amazing
Minnesota author, Julie Schumacher, has written a Language Arts teacher's, a librarian's, and a female teen reader's dream book! "The Unbearable Book Club for Unsinkable Girls" has garnered several positive professional reviews - and deservedly so (though now that I look at the goodreads reviews I see that the reviews are mixed - I will have to investigate this). I really liked "The Black Box" by Schumacher - but loved this even more!

The story concerns four teenage girls who are brought together
Jun 13, 2012 Holly rated it liked it
Shelves: teen
Well, like many of the other reviewers, I was ready to be done with the book in the first 50 pages. But alas, the only thing that kept me reading was to find out who bit the dust at the end. The cover flap makes you think its going to be a funny lighthearted book, but as the first page suggests, the events to come changed the main characters life, and she was never the same, and yes, book clubs can kill you b/c someone ends up drowning in the end. So says the first page.

As I was finishing this b
I lovelovelove this book!
“Thesis statement: Book clubs can kill you. (This essay ends with a person drowning. It turns out you don’t need much water for a person to drown.)…I want to apologize for some of the things you’ll read in this essay: they may not be appropriate for the assignment. In The Left Hand of Darkness Genly says, ‘I’ll make my report as if I told a story.’ That’s what I’m going to do. And I’ll explain how the books affected me – because whoever I was at the beginning of the sum
May 19, 2012 Daisy rated it did not like it
Shelves: netgalley
You guys, do not make the same mistake I did and be misled by this cover and summary: this is NOT a cute summer read. It's just not. I had expected it to be about girls bonding and forming genuine friendships while being in the book club and discovering everything wasn't so bad after all. Or something like it. I had expected it to be funny.

I was dead wrong.

The main character, Adrienne, is a bratty, whiny teenager. Seriously, I REALLY disliked her. I mean, sure she's hasn't had the best of luck
Jennifer Rinehart
Apr 21, 2014 Jennifer Rinehart rated it liked it
Kill Your Darlings

If you aren't familiar with the phrase, allow me to share with you, Kill Your Darlings is a common writer's term which means as the God of the story, you have to be brutal but true with the story, sometimes that means killing a beloved character and sometimes it means cutting those parts of the story that do not;

1. Add to character development in a meaningful way, or

2. Advance the story.

The Unbearable Book Club for Unsinkable Girls really needs more of this kind of brutality,
May 07, 2012 Ginny rated it it was amazing
When this book showed up on NetGalley, I grabbed it. But I left it on my Nook, debating if I wanted to read it or not. But I decided to read it-I've kind of been on a Contemporary kick lately and wanted another one. Immediately I was hooked. This book was just so much MORE than I could have hoped for!

The story starts with an assignment page for an 11th Grade AP English class. Adrienne Haus is the protagonist (to use some of her literary terms) and she is the voice of the novel. At the end of he
Jan 07, 2016 Katie rated it it was ok
This book would probably be best for teenage girls between 8th and 12th grade, but could also be used when teaching about what book clubs are and the benefits they have. When looking at the cover of this book I thought it would be a lighthearted book about teenage girls in a summer book club. The book wasn’t as lighthearted as I had originally hoped, but it still had some good qualities. I liked how relatable the four main girls were. Each was very different from the others, but had qualities ...more
Debbie Wenk
Jul 10, 2012 Debbie Wenk rated it it was ok
This story has a great premise with interesting characters, yet it falls flat. I was left turning pages looking for the rest of the story. Adrienne narrates this tale of four vastly different girls thrown together in a mother-daughter book club during the summer. A - as one of the girls calls her - has a single mom who is an English teacher. Jill is the only child of adoptive parents, CeeCee is the poor little rich girl woefully neglected by her parents, and Wallis is an enigma who actually ...more
May 23, 2014 On4ever rated it it was amazing
This book is so sad, so happy, it just.. URGH!! words cannot explain it. It made me cry, it made me laugh, and it made me angry (at some characters of course!). It is about these 4 girls, with different personalities and with different worlds. And they are basically forced by their parents to have a book club and read their summer reading books and talk about it, as a book club should do. But, more crazy problems come their way, and when I say crazy I mean CRAZY, like CRAY CRAY crazy. I totally ...more
When I saw the title for Julie Schumacher’s new YA novel, I couldn’t imagine a book club being unbearable – at least not at first. Then I read the publisher’s brief description and cracked up. Yep, I thought, that could definitely become unbearable very quickly. A bit of trivia: If you read The Body Is Water, Ms. Schumacher’s first novel, the character Jane Haus in that novel is the mom sixteen years later in this novel. Read the rest of my review at
Aug 19, 2012 Jane added it
Shelves: 5th-grade, friendship
charming and funny-a collection of types, the overachieving adopted from Asia girl, the mean rich girl, the follower with no self confidence and the mysterious and weird genius read the classics, with their mothers Read this one on the plane. Toward the end of the flight the teen boy sitting next to me asked me what I was reading, he'd been reading over my shoulder and liked it.
Descent story, just a little too for teens/young adult readers!
Elena R.
Nov 30, 2016 Elena R. rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Emily Dean
Nov 01, 2016 Emily Dean rated it it was ok
I liked the premise and I was really into it for a while, but then it just slowed down and became unremarkable.
Nov 04, 2016 Raingirl rated it liked it
Melancholic. Good but somehow a moody book.
Pooja (On books!)
3.5 stars

Originally posted here

I was VERY excited to read this book. I love book clubs and books about book clubs and that was enough to get me psyched about The Unbearable Book Club For Unsinkable Girls. And I did enjoy reading it, not just because I loved the literary references and banter between the four very different girls who are (well, three of them are) forced by their parents to be a part of a mother-daughter book club, but also because it was very different from what I expected!

The Un
RaeLynn Fry
Apr 24, 2012 RaeLynn Fry rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2012
TUBC4UG, for short
By: Julie Schumacher
Genre: YA Contemporary
Pub Date: May 8, 2012
Rating: PG
Coffee Beans: 4.5/5
Spoilers: Nope
Favorite Line: Oh, so many. See the section below. :)
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for this honest review

Publisher's Summary:
I'm Adrienne Haus, survivor of a mother-daughter book club. Most of us didn't want to join. My mother signed me up because I was stuck at home all summer, with my knee in a brace. CeeCee's
Lee Ann
Sep 17, 2012 Lee Ann rated it really liked it
As summer has already passed and Autumn officially starts this weekend, I'd like to suggest that book clubs would be great during the winter might not be able to get out and meet, but I guess you could do it by Skype, or email, or texting or through whatever other wonders of technology are out there. But book clubs, I think, would be best done face to face so that you can pick up on each other's emotions, interrupt with exclamations based on others' impressions, you, know good ...more
Ambiguous ending
Connie N.
I spent most of the book thinking I would rate it a 3-star read, but as I got further into it, it grew on me and I finished up rating it 4 stars. I'm not particularly into YA books, but this one was clever and I really liked the format. The story is about a group of 4 girls whose moms decide to form a book club to get their daughters doing something useful during the summer, plus providing some supposed quality mother-daughter time. Unfortunately the girls are less-than-enthusiastic, although ...more
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Julie Schumacher grew up in Wilmington, Delaware and graduated from Oberlin College and Cornell University. Her first novel, The Body Is Water, was published by Soho Press in 1995 and was an ALA Notable Book of the Year and a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award and the Minnesota Book Award.

More about Julie Schumacher...

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“Boredom is why God invented books.” 26 likes
“My mother says that some books are good no matter when you read them, and some are good at a particular moment; they come into your life at just the right time.” 18 likes
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