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Fly on The Wall

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At the Manhattan School of Art and Music, where everyone is unique and everyone is 'different', Gretchen Yee feels ordinary. It doesn't help that she's known as the girl who sits alone at lunch, drawing pictures of her favourite superhero, just so she won't have to talk to anyone. Her best (and only real) friend is there for her, but that's only if she's not busy - she's always busy!

It's no surprise that Gretchen isn't exactly successful in the boy department. Her ex-boyfriend is a cold-fish-sometimes-flirty ex who she can't stop bumping into. Plus, she has a massive crush on a boy named, Titus but is too scared to make the first move. One minute he seems like a sensitive guy, the next, he's a completely different person when he's with his friends. She can't seem to figure boys out!

Gretchen has one wish: to be a fly on the wall in the boy's locker room. What are boys really like? What do they talk about?

182 pages, Paperback

First published March 14, 2006

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About the author

E. Lockhart

29 books14k followers
E. Lockhart is the author of Again Again, Genuine Fraud, We Were Liars and Family of Liars, The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks, and several other books. Whistle: A New Gotham CIty Hero is a graphic novel.

website: www.emilylockhart.com
Instagram: elockhartbooks
Twitter: elockhart

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5 stars
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,098 reviews
Profile Image for Ariel.
301 reviews64.2k followers
January 4, 2018
I've said this before, but before joining booktube at least 50% of my yearly reading was made up of rereads. Everyone reads for different reasons, and it enjoys it in different ways, but for me, it was always about finding those special places that felt like home and then getting to visit them again and again and again.

After joining booktube my reading changed a lot, for the better and the different. I found myself rereading way less because I wanted to try and keep up with all the new books I was finding out about. Because of that, I've spent less time in my old favourite worlds. I started a tradition a while ago to start my year off with a reread, and after a dud last year, I was a bit worried again this year. But I was compelled to reread this one and BOY WAS THAT A GREAT DECISION.

I love this book. It's hilarious and charming and honest and clever. A girl gets turned into a fly, she is trapped in the boys locker room at her high school, and she realizes by seeing a lot of naked boys that people are just people. I love it. I understand why We Were Liars is Lockhart's most popular book, but I think this one deserves more reads too.

2013: This was my 4th or 5th time reading this book, and goodness I just love it. JUST LOVE IT. Absolutely one of my favourite books of life.
Profile Image for Maritza.
37 reviews3 followers
October 28, 2009
I picked this book up because it had an interesting premise: girl turns into fly and is literally a 'fly' on the wall but besides that there were no real redeeming quilities about this book. Half the time I was waiting for her to turn back into a person already, because all the ogling of the boys in the locker room was getting really annoying. I noticed that this author tends to use the same lines over and over again like we have miniscule attention spans and would have forgotten this fact from just a few pages before.

I can't even count how many times Gretchen said "Titus, Titus, Titus" it just got repetitive and boring and each time she said it I disliked her more and more.

I also did not like the fact that in this book she made Gretchen out to be so immature and childlike that it almost made me sick. For an 'artist' Gretchen didn't seem to pick up on any sort of details whatsoever. She seems totally clueless to the world around her. I also disliked the fact that her own parents treated her like a two year old. They sat down at dinner one day and told Gretchen that they were getting divorced in a few days while Gretchen is sitting there dumbfounded. She had no idea that her parents were getting divorced? They didnt feel like mentioning it to her before? maybe in the MONTHS that it takes to finalize a divorce? I found this particularly odd. I also disliked the fact that Gretchens mother was forcing her to throw out all of her stuff, because it wouldnt fit into their new apartment. The author goes into detail of what Gretchen has in her room and all of her stuff would barely fit into three large moving boxes so I have no idea what the big deal her mother was having.

Overall, I disliked this book immensely, the only thing I did like was when it ended so that I could continue on with my life and forget I ever read this book.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Kaila.
728 reviews13 followers
January 10, 2018
5/5 stars

I LOVE LOVE LOVED this book. It was so short and concise, but I was as emotionally invested in the story as I would have been in a full length novel. I was immediately excited to read this book when I read the premise. Basically, a girl is literally turned into a fly on the boys lockeroom wall. What a hilarious premise!! I had such a fun time reading this book and couldn't help but laugh out loud at so mnay points. The narration was witty, very relatable and also sarcastic. This has to be one of my favourite coming-of-age stories as we follow our heroine through her journey. Becoming a fly helps her feel more empathy for those around her, as well as coming to terms with her own identity. I highly recommend this book!! I'm so glad to be leaving 2017 with a bang, as this was one of my top reads for the year.


Gretchen Yee attends an art school, but she's not what you'd imagine. Instead of being considered 'unique' or 'special', Gretchen is just an ordinary teen, and a bit of an outcast. She is just the kind of girl who nerds out about comic books, eats alone at lunch and wonders if boys like her, especially if that boy is Titus. Does Titus like her back? What do the boys think of her? Why are they so much different than girls? Sick of the mediocracy of her life and these buzzing questions, Gretchen states that she'd like to be a fly in the boys' locker room, so she can finally figure it all out. Much to Gretchen's horror, her wish comes true and she is literally trapped as a fly in the school locker room.

I found this book to be unbelievably . I don't know if this book was meant to be a comedy, but I found it to be hilarious. It was such an honest portrayal of teenage life and the absurdity of it. Gretchen was sarcastic, witty and had quite a dry view on life. This was just so fun to read from, especially when she turned into a fly. The chapters when Gretchen was a fly were by far the most comical, as she found out the consequences of her wish. Day after day she had to watch a lot of naked boys, but surprisingly, that helped her figure her life out. This was such a unique and interesting was to tell a coming-of-age story, I loved it!

Gretchen was not a particularly likeable character, but I still enjoyed her point of view immensely. At the beginning of the book I just thought she was kind of pathetic. She constantly worried about what others thought of her, boys and had a negative view on everything. Even though these don't seem like likeable traits, they are honest traits. I remember thinking the same things as her when I was in school, which made Gretchen so relatable to me. She isn't a romanticised picture of a teenager, rather she is the brutally honest truth. Usually I don't go out of my way to pick up coming of age stories because I find them to be cheesy, but this one was honest and had relatable themes. Gretchen didn't change her life drastically throughout the story, but she did mature, and I enjoyed that believable (excluding the becoming a fly thing) character arc.

“I love the idea of the big life - the life that matters, the life that makes a difference. The life where stuff happens, where people take action. The opposite of the life where the girl can't even speak to the boy she likes; the opposite of the life where the friends aren't even good friends, and lots of days are wasted away feeling bored and kind of okay, like nothing matters much.”

I also really loved the theme that I found in this book. Through her time as a fly, Gretchen understands that people are just as real as her. Even if she can't see it on the surface, they all have vulnerabilities, insecurities and emotions. It's kind of ironic that Gretchen had to become a fly to realise so much about the people around her. This was of presenting the theme made it flow smoothly with the story. It also didn't make the theme seem obvious or boring, it was entertaining and thought-provoking the whole way through.

On top of this book having a great theme and plot, it was also just an overall feel good book. I don't exactly know why, but I had this sense of giddiness throughout the book, which was especially elevated at the end. This book just makes me so happy. Even if Gretchen wouldn't be my favourite person in real life, she was fun and I rooted for her. I just think this book had a very playful and light tone, which is probably why it brought me so much joy. Also, there is some very sweet friendship and romantic moments that made my heart go crazy. I was overcome with happiness at the end of this book, probably because I enjoyed it so much, found it immensely satisfying and think it is so well written.
Profile Image for Suzie Toumeh.
51 reviews45 followers
September 13, 2015
Let me start by saying THIS IS NOT ROMANCE.. I mean it's about becoming a fly for a week. I can't really see what's so romantic in that.

My favorite part of the book was "Orange and Up Yours" who are two weird guys but Lockhart kinda forgot about them...

Profile Image for Tatiana.
1,386 reviews11.8k followers
January 16, 2023
As seen on The Readventurer

I am a huge fan of E. Lockharts, but I have to admit, at first I couldn't quite get into this book. Maybe because of its artsy-ish tone - the heroine Gretchen Yee is a student at the Manhattan Art School, so everything about her (and for that matter everybody in the school) is art oriented and I can't quite identify with imaginative and artistic types. Or maybe because of a bizarre twist in the middle, when the story becomes somewhat fantasy-like - Gretchen finds that her wish of becoming a fly on the wall a boys locker room, quite literally comes true.

However the story really takes off (at least in my opinion) when we start learning about the world of male relationships, insecurities, secrets - the world which is a mystery to me up to this day. From then on the book is very hard to put down.

The major themes of all Lockhart's creations - facing difficulties instead of hiding from them, taking charge of one's life, and women empowerment - are very present in this book and delivered, as always, very well.

Another great book by E. Lockhart. Not my favorite of hers, but still worth your attention.
Profile Image for Yoda.
569 reviews110 followers
November 6, 2017
Entertaining and cute short story (Everything under 200pages is a short story for me). Not really something I would´ve bought if I bothered to read review/description. Still a solid 3stars.

Profile Image for Abby.
601 reviews80 followers
January 30, 2009
Fast read -- I read it in literally less than one hour. Gretchen is a shy, standoffish teen who loves reading & drawing superhero comics and attends a Manhattan magnet school for the arts. Feeling confused by her feelings toward Titus, a skinny Art Rat boy, and out of place in her school, she blurts out her wish to be a fly on the wall of the boy's locker room. And does she ever get her wish! Funny, smart, and uncharacteristically honest and straightforward about straight teen girl lust -- although I did find it incredibly tiresome that ALL the characters (boys included) referred to male genitalia as "gherkin." REALLY? Do you REALLY think that actual teens call penises "gherkins"? Or breasts "biscuits"? NO NO NO NO NO. If you can overlook this flaw, then I recommend this book to you. Fans of "Frankie Landau-Banks" will recognize some similar themes (girls spying on and infiltrating traditionally male space, budding feminist consciousness, elite school setting, etc) -- but I still think FLB is better.
Profile Image for Christina (A Reader of Fictions).
4,220 reviews1,651 followers
September 22, 2017
Sometimes venturing into an author’s backlist is like being Charlie let into Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory and getting to eat many tasty chocolates. Sometimes, though, you feel more like August Gloop, regretful of your life choices but unable to escape. With regards to Fly on the Wall, you can call me Gus. Fly on the Wall is a hot mess of shockingly bad young adult fiction to the degree that I cannot conceive of how anyone ever liked it enough for it to get published.

Fly on the Wall is the story of Gretchen Yee, and her crush on a boy. She’s pretty quiet, spending most of her time drawing pictures of Spider-Man; this results in struggles in art class, because her teacher refuses to recognize any artistic value or talent exhibited by this endeavor. On top of that, Gretchen’s only friend Katya has been weirdly distant lately, and Gretchen doesn’t know why. If Gretchen had naturally evolved, worked through her friendship with Katya and gotten to know Titus organically, this could have been decent. I mean, Lockhart’s Boyfriend List books were great! I had reason to expect this to be an okay read, if not a great one, but holy fuck was I ever wrong.

The basic frame at the start could have made for a pretty typical, decent YA book. EXCEPT this book is also inspired by Kafka’s The Metamorphosis. That fly on the cover? RELEVANT. Gretchen wishes to be a fly on the wall of the boy’s locker room, and lo and behold she awakens a locker room fly. This is an actual thing that happens. Gretchen goes missing for days because she is a fly trapped in the locker room.

While she’s in there, Gretchen pervs hard. That subtitle about how one girl saw everything? Everything means penises. She watches all the boys strip down, and she checks out what they’re packing. She watches them shower and pee. She gets very turned on by this. I never though I would read a book that would make me feel uncomfortable about women objectifying men (because lol how terrible that must be, guys), but Lockhart managed it. Conveniently, she overhears that a couple of boys have crushes on her, learns why her friend has been pulling away (because Gretchen would have judged her for hooking up with a boy), and gets to know her crush better (one-sidedly). About the only good thing I can say here is that Titus has two dads back before there was much lgbt rep in fiction, but holy shit is there a fuckton of offensive talk.

I’m not done, though. It gets worse. Seriously. This book is pretty edgy, right? I mean, it’s about a girl objectifying the shit out of some boys and getting all horny. Yet curious slang is used throughout the book to refer to body parts. Every reference to a butt, including Gretchen’s incredibly detailed rundown of good butts, is by the word “booty.” Penises are “gherkins.” Breasts, incredibly puzzlingly, are “biscuits.” I really have no fucking clue how Lockhart came up with that one, considering I’d only ever heard “biscuits” used to talk about a butt before; it took me about half the book to figure out what people meant when they talked about “biscuits.” The worst thing is that it’s not just Gretchen; the boys in the locker room talk about each other’s “gherkins” and girls’ “biscuits. Authors, if you’re not mature enough to even use existing slang to talk about body parts, just don’t write a book about genitals or sex, yeah?

What the fuck did I read? How can I get it out of my brain? Do not read this. It’s seriously one of the worst books I have ever read, and I’m so angry I spent money on it. Though it was amusing but oh my god my poor brain.

Profile Image for Casey.
389 reviews96 followers
December 8, 2016
This book was given to me as an ARC by Allen and Unwin in exchange for am honest review

Fly on the Wall is wacky and strange and fantastic and weird just like being a teenager in all honesty.

Fly on the wall is a super fast read staring Gretchen. Gretchen is a bi racial, comic book loving, art student that is surrounding by so many out there students she feels like she's not edgy enough in her "normal" clothing.

Gretchen is 15 and just figuring out how in the heck relationships with boys work, the messiness of teenagers and their lack of filter towards others. bullying, teachers putting pressure on her, and of course a crush that she can't seem to work out how to move things forward with.

I went into this book pretty blind and can I just say, uhh I was not expecting to take the title quite literal.

Gretchen transforms into a fly for a week (yes I was a bit what the hell at this point too but I was also like hell yeah freaky Friday with a fly, freaky Flyday, okay I'll stop) after wishing she could know what goes on in the boys locker room, yes its pretty juvenile but really I would have done the same thing when I was a teenager. There are a lot of internal thoughts and growing Gretchen goes through while being stuck in there for a week.

I enjoyed the insight on bullying and how teens tend the use of the world 'gay' as a derogatory term before someone can pull them up on it. Lockhart handled these subjects really well and I loved the end speech delivered by *insert name* standing up for his friends and educating his other friends on why it's not cool to call someone gay or make gay jokes as a way to put them down.

The thing that knocked my rating down was I was pretty sick of hearing penis's and boobs being referred to as Gerkins and Biscuits but hey that's the character and her age coming through truthfully, I am just an old person.
Profile Image for Zulaima.
202 reviews55 followers
March 11, 2023

So apparently, this is some sort of retelling of Kafka's The Metamorphosis but with a "feminist" twist... Honestly, this was just a lot of voyeurism and male nudity. Still enjoyable, though (obviously not the protagonist's inspection of and comparison between various genitalia). I kept waiting for something big to happen... but well. Did anything big ever happen in The Metamorphosis?
Profile Image for Nicole.
1,130 reviews18 followers
October 2, 2009
It's obvious in hindsight that a book whose premise is a girl-turned-fly watching the scene from the ceiling of the boys locker room would be all about sex. But I was still taken aback, especially since all the lustiness came out of nowhere. The first half of the book is character exposition, meet poor awkward comics-obsessed Gretchen. She turns into a fly, sees her first naked male classmate, and WHAM! Lusty lustfullness. Naked, naked, naked.

Sidenote: And yet, even with all this nudity, male genitalia is referred to only as "gherkin". Yeah, right. How many teenagers do you know who refer to "it" as a gherkin? Not only that, but females were endowed with "biscuits". Seriously. I spent the first several chapters wondering what crispy British cookies had to do with anything. Want some gravy with that? I was almost impressed with Lockhart's ability to describe in detail the MANY variations on the male form without once using either anatomical descriptions or street slang euphemisms...almost. But on the flip side, there was a sh*tload of cursing. Every word you can think of, including maternal insults. So where were the dicks and boobs? (Can I say dick on goodreads if it's not capitalized? Guess I'm going to find out...)

Back to the naked lusty locker rooms- I was tolerating all this hormone-induced oggling until Gretchen started assigning letter grades to various "booties". (Oh that's right, no one had an ass but there was plenty of booty bopping around.) She lost me at letter grades.

For all my harsh criticisms, the book has its finer points. I appreciated that for once it was a girl oggling the boys. And Gretchen fully admitted that she'd be pissed if a boy was watching her shower but that she just couldn't help herself. Who among us would be able to resist, especially as a 16 year old? I also liked the situation with Titus and his dad (about which I am being purposefully vague). The homophobia was rampant in the book and I was starting to get pissed off, but it all served a purpose eventually, so rock on Titus. The so-happy-together ending was cheesy but I accepted it only because Gretchen was freaking finally assertive and became the change she wanted to see in the world.

This was clearly an (almost) first book by a young author attempting to write a book that teenagers would relate to. For what it is, it's fine. A sort of diamond in the rough because you can see the potential under all the gherkins, booties, and biscuits.

And for what it's worth, I highly encourage you to read this book and then call me because I could keep going here. There is a lot that is problematic in a really wonderful discussion-inducing sort of way!
5 reviews
April 19, 2011
The fiction novel Fly on the Wall by e.lockhart, was the first novel that did not satisfy me and made me to think that it was a wrong choice that I picked this novel to read. The reason why I chose this novel is because one of my friend told me that this is a love story but the title was Fly on the Wall so it made me to wonder how does the fly do something with a love story? So I wanted to try spending my time and get the meaning behind it. I thought it was a interesting idea that the main character, Gretchen she suddenly became a fly one day and explore the boy’s locker room. But I thought overall, this novel was very immature. Throughout the novel, it was only about a girl liking a guy and thought everything about him was perfect. The main character only thought “Oh my god, he is so hot” the whole entire book and it was little bit embarrassing for me to read because it was so cheesy and I thought the way the main character acted was very immature. But the reason why I kept reading is because I thought maybe towards the end of the book, the immatureness will go away and it might be interesting at the end, which it did not turn out to be like that and the novel kept going to the same direction. The novel was 182pages and the reading level was not too hard and I really don’t want to recommend this book, but if you really love reading about young love, maybe you should take a look at this novel.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Adira.
418 reviews235 followers
March 19, 2014
I gave this book 3.5 stars.

This is exactly the type of story I would have gravitated toward as a teenager. The main character, Gretchen, is a typical self-proclaimed "nobody" artist in a high school full of talented artistic types. At the start of the book, she feels like she could disappear and no one would notice, but thanks to a transformation of sorts, she realizes that everyone suffers from insecurities. This book is reminiscent of Kafka's The Metamorphoses however, the characters in this book never come off as feeling pretentious or unrealistic.

I'd recommend this to anyone who needs a palette cleanser after reading a hard novel or emotional read. Gretchen's observations of the opposite sex are sure to make you laugh out loud.
Profile Image for guille.
212 reviews402 followers
September 17, 2016
No voy a escribir una reseña, pero voy a decir que me gusto mucho como este libro rompió con varios estereotipos y encaró varios temas. Bravo E. Lockhart, vos no me sabes decepcionar.
Profile Image for Amy.
225 reviews59 followers
October 1, 2016
I went into this book apprehensively. I love Lockhart's most recent work but I wasn't enthralled by the synopsis of Fly on the Wall. However, when I saw this was being released with a new cover to match those published by Hot Key Books I had to pick up a copy.

Even though Fly on the Wall is written in a heavily laid back, comical tone which is very different to what I am used to in Lockhart's writing I still thoroughly enjoyed it.

Gretchen Yee studies at the Manhattan High School for the Art where everyone wants to stand out. Gretchen is the quiet girl with crazy red her who sits alone at lunch but happens to have stuck her tongue down one of the popular Art Rats throat a couple of times. This puts her in the middle of conversation with the Art Rats and she constantly wonders what the boys in that group are really like. When her friend Katya keeps blowing her off to look after her sisters Gretchen wishes that she could be a fly on the wall which literally becomes true.

The premise of this story is just barmy, absolutely insane but it definitely went together well and got me laughing. Gretchen spends a week being a tiny insect on the bathroom wall of the boys locker room and compares all the 'boys booties and freaks out about their 'gherkins'.

Gretchen was well presented in this short book, we found out a lot about her and she seemed very real to me. I liked how much she grew as a person because of what happened to her, she seemed bitter before but she managed to find happiness even if her life wasn't 100% put together at the time. The plot was a little simple compared to Lockhart's other books but it definitely deserves recognition for being imaginative and for the characters being perfectly unique.

To be honest though, I don't think I'll ever hate an E.Lockhart book.
Profile Image for Amy.
1,637 reviews5 followers
November 21, 2009
This book was brought to my attention by a parent who thought it was inappropriate for a middle school library so I read it. The jury is still out. I enjoyed the story line, which is a girl named Gretchen who goes to an artsy school. She doesn't understand boys and makes a wish to be a fly on the wall in the boys locker room. For whatever reason it comes true. She spends a week as a fly and sees and hears a lot of things. She talks about what the boys look like (she likes to refer to their parts as 'gherkins') and makes categories of what kinds of butts they have. The language in the book is very strong and has a lot of f bombs as well as some homophobic language. There is a very realistic scene where the language gets tough, where a boy stands up for his gay dad and he tells his friend to stop using derogatory terms. I really liked the scene because it shows what hurt an 'innocent' word can give to someone. In the end Gretchen becomes a human again and realizes that people are people and goes on with her life. Because of the language and mature content I would not recommend this to a middle school reader.
Profile Image for Rexy.
174 reviews
June 28, 2015
If I can't change myself back, then I'll be an insect forever, buzzing against the windowpane, living out my now-puny life expectancy confined to a freakin' locker room.

It's definitely not what I expected.

I chose to purchase this book blindly-that is, without even looking at the synopsis at the back. I bought it because I was attracted by the cover and, to be honest, by E. Lockhart's name. Suffice it to say that my initial thoughts about it were completely off-course, haha. My expectations were not met and I think that's both a good thing and a bad thing.

I read (and loved!) We Were Liars first so I really thought this novel would be just as serious, dark, and haunting. I couldn't be more wrong. The two books are so different that I wouldn't have known it was written by one author if the covers didn't say so.

Speaking of covers, the cover of this book completely misled me! I thought it would be about a teenager that has superpowers or something just as awesome that allows her to fly. No, siree. It turns out she literally becomes a fly. A fly trapped on the wall of a men's locker room.

Like I said, completely not what I was expecting, haha! In contrast to 'We Were Liars'' dark and mysterious tone, 'Fly on the Wall' is relaxed and hilarious! I don't remember laughing out loud but, to be fair, it's hard to elicit real laughter from me while reading. I did grin a lot of times though :D

The story isn't that memorable but in contrast, the scenes are. I'm writing this review three months after I read it and I don't even remember anything of value except gherkin* scenes, haha!

Although I rated this book only 3/5 stars, I think many readers who prefer light and not-so-serious reads would enjoy it very much. In case you haven't inferred yet, my judgement is clouded because I kept on comparing Fly On the Wall with We Were Liars, haha. I'm a reader that enjoyed that dark and brooding YA tale more than this wtf happened laugh-out-your ass YA stuff so I took down 2 stars. In a different world where I read this book before We Were Liars, I'd probably rate it higher.

~~~~~~~~ SPOILERS ~~~~~~~~~
*gherkin scenes, aka my favorite scenes:
These are the moments when Gretchen spies on boys' gherkins and describe them in hilarious detail. Lord, those were the moments I grinned. Well and truly grinned. If you've read this book, I think you'll agree with me, haha! ;)
Profile Image for Annamaria .
353 reviews53 followers
April 3, 2016
"People think of hearts when they think of love, but a heart is a bloody organ in the body. It doesn't have any emotions. It's like a metaphor for love that has nothing to do with what love actually is."

I thought that Fly on the wall would have been an interesting book looking at human behaviour through the eyes of a young girl. How do boys act differently than girls? Are there ways to conciliate these differences? Are there similarities? Instead I was given a book about a girl wishing to turn into a fly into the boys locker room in order to drool over their naked bodies and... "gherkins"? *shudders*

This book touched important topics like homophobia and bullism but didn't deal with them at all. Why developing characters when your main one just wants to see them flapping around their genitalia? Like, why did Gretchen witness boys being bullied and didn't say anything when she went to the principal demanding bigger lockers for girls? I mean, aren't you the biggest bitch ever, Gretchen Yee?

This book is the reason why I'll be facepalming myself for the rest of my life.
Profile Image for Heather.
284 reviews13.9k followers
October 9, 2009
Once again, E.Lockhart has earned major kudos for her frank and honest dialog and for her genuine and oh so realistic characters.

Gretchen is insecure, as so many teen girls are, though she posses above average drawing skills for her age, and has been attending an arts focused magnet school, which is highly competitive. Gretchen fills invisible, after all, when everyone is unique, no one is. She doesn't fit in, and despite her efforts to make herself an individual, she feels as though she is failing miserably. If only she could be a fly on the wall, she may just be able to understand what makes people, especially boys, tick.

This book is about what happens when that wish comes true.

Fly on the Wall isn't E.Lockhart's strongest book, in fact, I dare say it is the weakest, but it is has moments of hilarity and honesty that I have come to expect from Lockhart and I admire her all the more for daring to go where many authors fear to tread, the boys locker room and all that implies.
Profile Image for Ari.
211 reviews19 followers
February 8, 2017
lmao so many ppl be complaining about how this book is immature and the main character is child like and maybe it IS but I love it anyway., but it's also a very easy and quick read (which is gr8 for me bc I'm in a reading slump and finishing a book in two days is a miracle) and it's funny too! after the first part I kept wondering if Gretchen would ever finish Metamorphosis, and liek, really relate to Gregor, but alas it didn't happen. another 'alas': we don't get to know what happened to Xavier and Carlo!!! I'm curious!!!
I still think it was very funny and enjoyed it!!!
Profile Image for Zeenat.
5 reviews4 followers
August 8, 2018
I started reading this book without reading the synopsis and I was suprised when the title was not a metaphor. It took me a while to see the point of it, but I finally understood how Gretchen learned from the experience of turning into a fly. There is something I never thought I would say. There were some plot holes and the ending felt a bit forced and inaccurate. However, I still enjoyed it.
Profile Image for Shivani Verma.
59 reviews
January 23, 2022
3.75 ⭐️

It’s quite interesting how a girl turns into a fly and is in the boys locker room of her high school. She observes lots of things that is going on and reflects upon that. It’s pretty fast paced. Not at all boring. I liked how it ends. Pretty cool.

Well, my only complaint is the way the students call human body parts especially boys genitals and girls breasts as something weird - like I get it you want to be funny here or you just want to make up names when you are in high school but it bothered me a lot- like Monica (from FRIENDS TV show) calling vagina a flower. I guess I feel this way because I am not a student, my younger self would have related more to this.

Anyway, that’s not something huge, just a minor comment. Lol

Overall, pretty entertaining.

Definitely recommend it!
Profile Image for Karin.
1,333 reviews6 followers
July 27, 2017
Gretchen Yee, a student at Manhattan High School for the Arts, is hanging out by herself more now that her best friend is hanging out with the Art Rats, Sophomore boys who are drawing majors, and has a crush on Titus. She draws spiderman at lunch time so she can be by herself, but also wishes she could be a fly on the wall on the boys locker room so that she can see and hear what goes on, which ties into their studying Metamorphosis in Literature. She gets her wish, and things are not as they appear to be once she's there.

There really isn't much Kafka connection, but there is a lot of humour and poignancy mixed in her hormonal response to seeing boys changing. This is a fun read.
Profile Image for Mara (Sh....).
22 reviews
March 16, 2021
For some reason i thought it would be interesting to read a novel about a girl becoming a fly in order to explore the boy’s locker room. The funny and modern version of Franz Kafka's The Metamorphosis in other words. This book could be hilarious, fascinating, amusing. I was wrong. It ended up being awkward, not funny, dull, boring, a complete disaster.

Profile Image for Elisa Fumis.
Author 9 books44 followers
June 23, 2020
Gretchen Kaufmann Yee ha quindici anni e frequenta la Manhattan School for Art and Design (Ma-Ha), una scuola pubblica di New York.
Le piace disegnare, in particolar modo i supereroi della Marvel (Spiderman è il suo preferito).
È innamorata di Titus Antonakos, un componente degli Artiratti, un gruppo di ragazzi che si mettono a fumare vicino ai cassonetti. Ne fa parte anche il suo ex ragazzo, Shane, che l’ha scaricata per un’altra ragazza. Gli altri sono Adrian, Malachy e Brat.
Titus è intelligente, sensibile e profondo, è magro, ha la pelle chiara, gli zigomi alti, i capelli neri e un look alla Johnny Rotten. Pur non piacendo alle ragazze, è il tipo ideale di Gretchen. Peccato che non abbia il coraggio di confessargli ciò che prova.
Nonostante si sia tinga i capelli di rosso, si sente una qualunque. Nella sua scuola è vietato essere “normali”, bisogna conformarsi all’anticonformismo. Neppure la sua insegnante di disegno, la Kensington, sembra capirla e apprezzarla: vorrebbe che la smettesse di copiare lo stile dei fumetti che tanto adora.
Quando scopre che i genitori stanno divorziando, crede che il padre abbia un’altra, si sente abbandonata dalla sua unica amica, Katya, e capisce di non riuscire a fare alcun passo avanti con il ragazzo dei suoi sogni, desidera diventare una mosca nello spogliatoio maschile.
Quella che sembra soltanto una battuta si trasforma in realtà: Gretchen si risveglia a scuola con le sembianze di una mosca, un po’ come accade a Gregor Samsa nel romanzo “La Metamorfosi”.
La sua nuova vita le permette di spiare i maschi della sua scuola, osservando i loro pregi e i loro difetti. Valuta i loro sederi, gli ascolta, scopre che anche quelli che si mostrano sicuri di sé nascondono delle fragilità. Capisce che sono umani, proprio come lei e tutte le altre ragazze.
Questa nuova opportunità le consente di conoscere meglio Titus e i suoi amici e al contempo di comprendere se stessa e di riportare a galla le ingiustizie e le disparità tra maschi e femmine. Quest’ultime hanno lo spogliatoio più piccolo, con meno docce e nessun armadietto con la combinazione per lasciarvi dentro le scarpe da ginnastica o lo shampoo.
Se non fosse diventata una mosca, non avrebbe imparato un’importante lezione di vita.

Una mosca nello spogliatoio maschile è un romanzo per ragazzi, divertente e profondo.
Affronta diversi temi importanti e delicati, quali la disparità tra i sessi, l’omofobia, l’accettazione della diversità e soprattutto la ricerca di se stessi, del proprio posto nel mondo.
Emily Lockhart utilizza uno stile irriverente e fresco per permettere ai più giovani di riflettere e ricordare agli adulti le cose importanti.
La vita di Gretchen è alla deriva, ma è proprio la trasformazione a cambiarla: non si dovrebbe mai giudicare dalle apparenze. Nello spogliatoio maschile i ragazzi sono nudi, scoprono i propri corpi, ma anche le proprie debolezze, le proprie paure, i propri pensieri, i propri segreti, le proprie lacrime, le proprie frustrazioni. E lei è la spettatrice, come se guardasse un film nella sala di un cinema. Attraverso le situazioni che osserva, matura. Non serve essere dei supereroi per aiutare gli altri, basterebbe battersi per le giuste cause o avere il coraggio di invitare fuori il ragazzo amato.
Il lettore segue il suo percorso di crescita personale: all’inizio la ragazza si isola, preferendo il disegno ai suoi compagni, non conosce il corpo maschile, non fa parte di un gruppo e ha soltanto un’amica. Durante l’adolescenza capita a molti di pensare di non valere (a causa di un’umiliazione da parte di un’insegnante, di una storia finita o per un difetto fisico) e di chiudersi. Gretchen non pensa di piacere, di essere “notata”. A causa della sua scarsa autostima, non è motivata e non sa cosa vuole; talvolta, dà tutto troppo per scontato. La sua “trasformazione” da essere umano a insetto ripugnante le dà la spinta necessaria per acquisire nuove consapevolezze.
Sono queste le cose che ci insegna la giovane protagonista di questo romanzo. A volte ci dimentichiamo il nostro lato umano, celato da chili di trucco, da vestiti oversize, da sorrisi di cortesia. Tutti noi dovremmo accettarci per quelli che siamo, guardarci allo specchio senza odiarci, essere sinceri con noi stessi, imparare a scrutarci con gli occhi di chi ci apprezza, anche se siamo troppo magri o non abbiamo un corpo perfetto. Non possiamo accontentare gli altri e vivere una vita a metà, infelici (smettendo, ad esempio, di disegnare fumetti o fingendo di non essere omosessuali) e con le ali tarpate. Questo significa essere supereroi nella realtà.

In definitiva, Una mosca nello spogliatoio maschile è un romanzo scorrevole, spassoso e a tratti profondo. Lo stile è semplice e adeguato al target. I personaggi sono caratterizzati abbastanza bene, alcuni spiccano più di altri (Titus e Brat sono molto interessanti, a mio avviso). La trama è originale, nonostante il riferimento al romanzo di Kafka: l’autrice ha sfruttato questa caratteristica (la “metamorfosi”) per permettere al lettore di riflettere e al tempo stesso di divertirsi. Il finale è toccante e dolce. Si potrebbe quasi definire un romanzo d’amore.

Lo consiglio a chi ha bisogno di svagarsi e cerca una lettura fresca e leggera con qualche spunto di riflessione.
Profile Image for Georgi_Lvs_Books.
985 reviews27 followers
October 18, 2017
I really enjoyed this read.

It was different and funny.

I’ve been reading a few horror’s as it’s October. So it was a nice change to read something like this.
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