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Gamer Girl

3.77  ·  Rating details ·  4,355 ratings  ·  697 reviews
After Maddy's parents divorce, she's stuck starting over at a new high school. Friendless and nicknamed Freak Girl, Manga-loving artist Maddy finds refuge in the interactive online game Fields of Fantasy. In that virtual world, she reinvents herself as Allora, a gorgeous elfin alter ego, and meets a true friend in Sir Leo. Maddy can't hide behind Allora forever, especially ...more
Hardcover, 248 pages
Published November 13th 2008 by Dutton Children's Books
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Anna The author has more recently said she intends to write another book, but I think she said she is going to start another book.
Amanda Hall *garish, peppy rock music plays as Ashton Kutcher comes out of nowhere* Eyyyy! You've just been Punk'd!

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Average rating 3.77  · 
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 ·  4,355 ratings  ·  697 reviews

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SERIOUSLY someone stop me from picking books entirely based on their covers. IT USUALLY DOES NOT END WELL.
In this case, I expected a wonderful book and got a cliched story with unlikable characters.
Jan 25, 2010 rated it did not like it
This is not a book as much as it is a collection of clichéd plot devices and character stereotypes that are more two-dimensional than those found in after-school specials.

It has everything which makes a teen book amount to nothing. A main character named "Maddy Starr" (an obvious author-insert for Mari Mancusi) who constantly bitches about how "nobody gets her, and nobody ever will," and how she's repulsed that no one at her new school is a "mop headed emo boy" or an "Edward Cullen worshiping go
Celise Winters
Jul 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing
You can read my full review by clicking here!

Have you ever read a unique book where no matter how hard you try, you can't seem to find anything like it? Gamer Girl would have to be one of those types of books. There's nothing really special in wording that Mari Mancusi uses. But somehow, the plot draws me in. It's different, to say the least.

I read Gamer Girl about three years ago, and at that time, I was a seventh grader. The cover drew me in(I always judge the cover) and when I finished the bo
The FountainPenDiva, Old school geek chick and lover of teddy bears
This book had the potential to be so much more, a real paen to the "pwn you" spirit of geek girls and gamer-girls everywhere (of which I am one), but the author chose instead to rehash every predictable high-school trope prevalent in much of today's YA fiction. Not to mention create the thoroughly unlikable character of Maddy Starr, who was quite obviously Mari Mancusi--another grown woman reliving her high school days--what is the deal with that anyway? First Meyer and now Mancusi and goddess k ...more
Vanessa K.
May 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing
THIS BOOOK IS MY NUMBER 1 FAVORITE BOOK! This book was so awesome! For me i loved this book because this book talks about a girl that love japanese manga and anime and she watches the episodes and draw them, it's just like me and other people who love anime and manga! This book really made me smile when i heard very familliar animes in the book. For me, this book was sort of like a cinderella story,have any body heard of the movie "A Cinderela Story"? That movie had the movie star Hilary Duff in ...more
Nov 15, 2009 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: No one
Recommended to Ruby by: My cousin
No. Just, no.

I hate this book. I just HATE it. I want to throw it to the wall and burn it. I forced myself to finish this book so I can get on with reading another book that I was sure would be better (I HATE having to stop reading a book without finishing it). I'm used to reading predictable books, but this is just ridiculous. No plot twist, no real conflict, it's plain and there's nothing memorable about it besides the fact that it includes manga and a MMORPG.

I couldn't connect AT ALL with the
Apr 27, 2009 added it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 11, 2012 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 23, 2009 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 06, 2014 rated it it was ok
The only thing worse than a stereotyped otaku-gamer heroine is one that reads like she was written by a wannabe otaku-gamer.

I think this book has done more damage to the image of the manga-reading/cosplayer/nerd community than good.

Lauren  Librarian
Dec 28, 2013 rated it liked it
Maddy's parents have recently divorced and her mom has moved Maddy and her younger sister from the big city of Boston, to a small rural town. Maddy and her old friends from Boston describe most of the teens in the area as Aberzombies, preppy kids that dress in polo shirts, play football, and aren't really aware of most of Maddy's interests.

Maddy loves manga, anime, and is a gifted artist, but is quickly deemed as "freak girl" by one of the most popular boys at her school. It doesn't help that h
Nov 04, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Gabby Watson

Book Review 2

Gamer Girl:
A Twist on Reality

Life sucks. Well at least Maddy Starr thinks it does. But you can’t blame her: her parents just got divorced and because of that, Maddy, her sister, and her mom are stuck living in her grandma’s “unicorn museum”. She’s getting mercilessly bullied by Billy Henderson and the Haters, and it doesn’t help that she’s in love with Billy’s right hand man.
Things start to look up on Maddy’s 16th birthday. Her dad sends her a computer game call
Dec 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own
I read this AGES ago in high school and it was so, so important to me. I need to reread and properly review.
3.5 stars

This was cute but BOY was it predictable. Right from the start, I could have told you exactly how the story would go to a T. It also reads quite young and dramatic, with a child of a recent divorce going around hating the world for being so unfair and whatever. That's not necessarily unrealistic, and as someone who also went through a divorce and also had a shit time in high school because of it, I can kind of relate. But it did feel quite juvenile and Disney Channel-esque. Maybe my cri
Grace, Queen of Crows and Tomes
Jan 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, 4-stars
This book is somewhat cliche, but I actually really enjoyed it! This is more like book candy for me than it being super inspirational or really deep, it's just a casual story to enjoy that has a little bit of romance! If you feel like just tuning out the world for a little while, then you can try this book!! It's a pretty quick and easy read.

Aug 26, 2010 rated it liked it
I'm a little torn with my impressions of "Gamer Girl". Let me first start off by saying that the premise did appeal to me because I was very much into games, manga, and anime when I was around the protagonist's age (matter in point I still am, but I don't have as much of the time to place to it now as I used to.). So when I read the premise, I thought it was an excellent subject to write a book about and eagerly awaited reading it. I lucked out finding it at my local library (which I just checke ...more
Aug 13, 2013 rated it it was ok
Okay I get that this is purely fictional and yet, I expected scenarios to be possible and not so far-fetched when it comes to realistic fiction. One of the elephantine/ginormous plotholes is something I wouldn't spoil. Never mind, here it is:(view spoiler) ...more
Amanda Edwards
Dec 23, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 9th-grade-sof
Gamer Girl, by Mari Mancusi, is about a 15 year old girl, named Maddy, and that she gets a game from her dad for her birthday. Her mother and father split up, and Maddy and her sister, and mom, have to live at their grandma's house. Maddy has to leave her old friends behind for what her mother and father's relationship had ended. She has to go to a whole different school, in order to make new friends and enemies. So the game that Maddy got for her birthday is named, Fields of Fantasy, and she ge ...more
Jan 09, 2013 rated it it was ok
This is a book that I would read once, but never again.

I'm not going to lie; I did not enjoy this book as much as I wanted myself to. The main character was a girl that I could easily aspire to become; her life could possibly be an exact duplicate of mine, however, the difference was that her life was too easy.
This book did not do what I wished it would to me emotionally. In most books I enjoyed, there were times when I could emotionally connect with the main character, and we would seem to form
celi ♡
Dec 15, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015, 2017, 2019
I’ve had this book for nearly ten years, since I was in middle school. It’s cliche and predictable but it’s so much fun and gives me so much nostalgia that I keep coming back to it again and again. I can’t even remember how many times I’ve read this now but I know I will continue to reread it for years to come.
Mar 13, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2009
His name is CHAD MURRAY? Like, in recognition of Chad Michael Murray, the One Tree Hill star? What a terrible, terrible coincidence. Just, come on - as soon as he cheated on/betrayed Sophia Bush, he's been kicked off my LIKE list to the very bottom. Besides, I’ll always remember him as squinty-eyed-boy.

Gamer Girl (GG) reminded me too much of A Cinderella Story (ACS). So typically clichéd that it made me want to bang my head against the wall. Then moan in agony.

1. Pathetic protagonist who's con
Jul 02, 2012 rated it liked it
Maddy’s life couldn’t get much worse. Her parents split and now she’s stuck in a small town and at a new school. Most of the time, she retreats into her manga art, but when she gets into the Fields of Fantasy online computer game, she knows she’s found the one place she can be herself. In the game world, Maddy can be the beautiful and magical Allora and have a virtually perfect life. And she even finds a little romance. But can Maddy escape her real-life problems altogether, or will she have to ...more
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Sally Kruger aka "Readingjunky" for

Maddy Starr's world has come to an end. Her parents just divorced, and now she's living with her mother and her 8-year-old sister in the unicorn-infested house of her grandmother. Yikes! Could it possibly get any worse?

Yep, it can get worse.

On her first day at her new high school, Maddy is humiliated. As she's about to leave for school, her grandmother declares she will not allow her granddaughter to go to school looking like "a dea
Danielle Routh
May 21, 2020 rated it it was ok

Okay, so I knew that going in because I read this way back in high school, lured by the pretty cover and Bitmoji-like art heading every chapter. But for kicks, I wanted to read it again just to see if it was as bad as I remember. AND YES, IT IS.

To be fair, I kinda see what Mari Mancusi was going for with the attempted self-awareness of "this is so after-school special" and intentionally making everything a bit ridiculous (manga makes you popular! You too can win a
Mar 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I thought that this was a cute book that explores the dynamics between Maddy and her newly divorced family and having to now go to a new school, in a new city and facing up to the mean people she encounters. But her father buys her an online game called Fields of Fantasy and she starts playing it hoping to connect to her absent father, but instead starts to play with a boy her age, called Sir Leo.
I liked how the book touches on a lot of the feelings that you get when you have to go to someplace
Alissa Perry
Dec 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book is so amazing. I can relate myself to this charcter. When I first started reading it, I was like, wow this so amazing. Maddy watches animes. I watch and draw pictures to. I like this book because it also inspires people not to give up and to take a stand for what you belive in. I also like how Maddy used the game to escape from her real world where Maddy met nicer people than at her school.

When Maddy made her manga club, more people came then she expected. I felt sorry when the bully
Ginger (Sproutygamer)
Mar 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I loved this sooo much! It gave me so much nostalgia. This is about girl having a really rough time at school and then her dad gives her an online videogame for her birthday. She meets someone to quest with in there and it takes off from there. I met my husband in a mmorpg, Everquest 2. This brought me back to then. The author was authentic to the mmo experience down to fetch quests and dying in awkward places. There is also a mention on anime and manga in there like full metal alchemist and .ha ...more
Mar 12, 2014 rated it did not like it
I read this book once upon a time, back when I was young and naive. I really communicated with the main character back then, now so long ago. Now that I have returned to the book with all the things I have learned and experienced, to be very frank, this book sucks.

The cover is cute, and the chapters begin with cute emoticons of the mc. That's cute. However...the plot is too predictable, the main character annoys me deeply (she also contradicts herself at select parts), and it is just one long ra
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I should have known by the title that this book was terrible. No self respecting gamer would label themselves a gamer "girl". Not only is it slightly offensive to categorize yourself as something separate and thus pushing the cultural idea that male is "default", but anyone who does label themselves that is clearly not a gamer. If you play games and are you are a girl, you are simply a gamer. Stop trying to segregate us! I'm all for female empowerment but we can do that without tagging already e ...more
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Mari Mancusi grew up where the north wind meets the sea (otherwise known as Massachusetts), but has since made her home in the great state of Texas, mostly due to her love of summer. (And tacos.) A former Emmy Award winning TV news producer, today she is the author of more than two-dozen books for kids, teens, and adults, mostly of the sci-fi/fantasy variety. In addition to writing, Mari loves tra ...more

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“Whatcha doin', Freak Girl?"
"What does it look like, brainiac?" I shot back, even surprising myself with the force of my jab. "I'll give you three guesses. No, wait. Don't strain yourself. Wouldn't want to hurt your head." I waved a flyer in his face, channeling my inner mean girl. "See these? I'm hanging them...on a...wall!" I spoke the last part slowly, as if addressing a dim-witted child. Which wasn't far off the mark, now that I thought about it. "With tape," I added, waving at the dispenser. "You know-sticky, sticky!”
“Anyway, I'm sure the guy lives a million miles away."
"Or he could live right in your backyard. You never know."
I nodded, keeping a poker face, even though the idea of Sir Leo living in my backyard was extremely appealing.”
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