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Secrets of a Fangirl

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  99 ratings  ·  36 reviews
Sarah Anne loves lacrosse, and the MK Nightshade series that everyone was obsessed over in grade school. The problem is that she's still obsessed, which is way too nerdy for a popular kid like her. So she hides her geekiness with a set of rules meant to keep her geek and jock selves separate.

Except when she's offered a spot in a Nightshade fandom contest, where the winner
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published May 28th 2019 by Arthur A. Levine Books
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Average rating 3.94  · 
Rating details
 ·  99 ratings  ·  36 reviews

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Nicole M. Hewitt
Jun 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
This review and many more can be found on my blog: Feed Your Fiction Addiction

This book puts a spotlight on the struggle between fitting in and holding onto the things that make you unique. Sarah Anne' best friends all think that MK Nightshade is for babies, but she's still the ultimate (secret) fan. When she gets the chance to compete for a huge fan prize, she decides to go for it---as long as she can do it without anyone knowing. Of course, that proves easier said than done, and Sarah Anne spe
Sophia (Bookwyrming Thoughts)
I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Hello, my name is Sophia, and I am a fangirl of many forms. A book with the word "fangirl" on it? YES PLEASE. You know you have my attention.

Secrets of a Fangirl  is a book about a fangirl.
AKA ME! And you, because you've got to be obsessed with something here. Maybe it's over a book or a show or even a movie.

(Are there secrets?
Candyce Kirk
May 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Secrets of a Fangirl is a middle grade book that I read in one sitting. This author knows how to suck you in from the start. I guess it helps being a fangirl myself, that I love when characters are also in a fandom and love everything about it. On top of that, this book addresses some really serious subjects, that this age group may deal with: bullying, accepting yourself, friendships, finding where you belong and accepting the things you love.

Sarah Anne is a big fan of the MK Nightshade series,
Cindy Mitchell *Kiss the Book*
Secrets of a Fangirl by Erin Dionne, 272 pages. Arthur A Levine (Scholastic), June 2019. $17.

Content: G



Since they entered middle school, Sarah Anne, 7thgrade, has always followed the lead of her best friend, Roxy, when it comes to clothes, music, activities, because Roxy knows what will make them popular. But Sarah Anne has hidden the fact that she still loves the MK Nightshade fantasy series. Now Sam (as she’s known on the fan boards) h
May 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: other-reviews
SECRETS OF A FANGIRL is a fun contemporary middle grade about embracing yourself for who you are and what you love. Sarah Anne is one of the popular girls in middle school and a star lacrosse player. Her best friend told her a few years before that she couldn’t like MK Nightshade anymore, so Sarah Anne has created some rules to separate herself from the fandom which she still adores. In fact, she is such a big fan that she has won a contest to be on a panel.

At the panel, Sarah Anne is talked ove
Jun 23, 2019 rated it liked it
I haven’t read a book by Erin Dionne in nearly ten years, so this felt like an easygoing throwback to my childhood. Secrets of a Fangirl is a very boilerplate story, but it has so much genuine enthusiasm and love for nerd culture that it pulls it off anyway. Though the series that the main character adores is fictional, her obsession with it can easily be translated to any fandom you’ve ever fallen in love with, and the story examines—though not in an overly heavy-handed way—sexism within fan co ...more
This one is a 3.5 for me. Books like this one are so good for the soul and so very necessary for middle graders who feel that they must lose or hide a part of themselves in order to fit in. For sixth grader Sarah Anne Marchetta, that means leaving behind her fondness for the MK Nightshade series. Instead, she spends her time playing lacrosse and following the lead of her best friend, Roxy, who is determined to rise to the top of the social order in their grade and has advised her to get over thi ...more
May 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Sarah Anne is the biggest fan of the MK Nightshade series, but it's taboo in the popular world of her high school. As one of the popular girls, she has to hide the geek in her to avoid being made fun of. She also doesn't want to risk losing her best friend Roxy, especially since Jess D starts hanging around. Jess is shoving a wedge between Roxy and Sarah Anne, so it makes Sarah even more fearful of her secret.

When Sarah wins a contest for the MK Nightshade series, she's entered to win tickets to
Jun 14, 2019 rated it liked it
Sarah Anne is popular, plays lacrosse, and has a secret life of loving a book series that she and her friends all loved in elementary school. When she wins a contest, she starts pulling away from her two best friends in order to keep her fangirl life secret. Jess D., a new mean girl, joins their group, and Sarah Anne's popularity and status is questioned by her. It doesn't help that a boy has a crush on Sarah Anne, and the group leader, Roxy, really wants her to go so Roxy can go with the gu
Erica Sonzogni
Nov 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: teen-books
In Secrets of a Fangirl, Sarah Anne loves MK Nightshade, the creator of The Realm, a fictional fantasy world similar to that of Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings. Unfortunately, MK Nightshade is not considered “cool” by other middle schoolers, especially Sarah Anne’s friends. Even though this was the case, Sarah Anne secretly entered an MK Nightshade contest and won. While she was excited to be competing for the number one fan slot, she had to do so by lying sneaking around her friends in order ...more
Jill Jemmett
Jul 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book!

I could really relate to Sarah Anne, the main character. She was a huge fan of a series called Nightshade, but she had to hide it from her friends. Her friends no longer thought it was “cool” to belong to a fandom, so Sarah Anne had to pretend that she didn’t like it anymore either. When she enters a contest online and wins, entering her into a fandom challenge, her secret “geeky” identity is put on display. I could relate to this because I remember in middle school and high sc
Kayla Plutzer
Mar 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing
*Before I jump into my review, I want thank the publisher and The FFBC for providing me with a spot on this blog tour and an ARC in exchange for this honest review.*

Sarah Anne wants to be cool, I mean she is cool! But she wants to stay cool, she doesn’t want anything jeopardizing that and her best friend can’t know about her passion. But when she enters a contest which needs her to do more things that put her “geek” on full display.

I really enjoyed this book. The author captured the feelings of
Kate Waggoner
May 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019-read
@KidLitExchange #partner

Thank you to the @KidLitExchange network and the publisher for the advance copy of Secrets of a Fangirl by Erin Dionne. All opinions are my own.

I absolutely loved this middle grades novel. It focuses on topics and themes that many middle schoolers have to deal with: peer pressure, fitting in, and being true to yourself. Sarah Anne likes lacrosse, hanging out with her best friend Roxy, and the MK Nightshade series and realm. Roxy also used to enjoy the MK Nightshade fando
Mari Johnston
Jun 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
This review and many others can also be found at Musings of a (Book) Girl.

Middle grade is one of my favorite genres, and I’m so glad this gem of a book found me! Erin Dionne is the author of numerous middle-grade novels, but this is the first one I’ve read. After Secrets of a Fangirl though I’m hoping to read some of her backlist titles.

A couple of weeks prior to reading Secrets of a Fangirl I had the privilege of interviewing Erin. I could tell right away that she was meant to be writing books
Dec 20, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: nky-clear, chapter
Sarah Anne cements her place as a popular girl by playing lacrosse and following the lead of her BFF Roxy and that means pretending this isn’t STILL obsessed with Nightshade fantasy series. Secretly, Sarah Anne still loves the books and even wins a chance to be on a fan panel and a convention. When the rest of the panel implies that Sarah Anne is only there because of her father she becomes determined to win a contest to prove otherwise. It’s pretty hard to juggle a secret contest, school work, ...more
Sep 04, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ah, middle-school drama...I look back on thee fondly.

A cute and quick contemporary middle-grade with a good message about staying true to yourself. I enjoy books about fandoms but the main focus on this was Sarah Anne/SAM's relationship with her friends and trying to be popular vs. following her geeky passions. Wish we had gotten more details on why she loves the MK Nightshade fandom so much because a lot of the other people in it acted like jerks to her just because she was a girl.
Nov 23, 2019 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aileen (Allie) Barton
Jan 20, 2020 rated it really liked it
A great middle grade read that teaches us the importance of being ourselves. Sarah Anne loves all things MK Nightshade, a fantasy series, but keeps it a secret from her friends as they don’t deem it “cool.”
Fun read, but no real literary merit!
Apr 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
The author was spot-on with her representation of how many boys treat girls who are into a fandom. I also enjoyed the struggle the main character had trying to keep up with her maturing friend group who wanted to be popular versus trying to be true to herself and stick to her morals.
Feb 06, 2022 rated it it was amazing
OMG OMG- As a lacrosse player myself and someone who loves things normally considered "nerdy", I loved this book. It had a great lesson on being yourself and not letting anyone else try to define you. ...more
Jul 22, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5 stars. I didn't like this book as much, because half of the book, she was just faking her life. I think this book was a short, cute read, with a good message. ...more
Jul 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was adorable.
Sep 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
I have never been too worried about wearing my fandom on my sleeve.
Of course I came to it in college. Early college but still college. So that might have helped.
Fun one!!!!!
Nov 20, 2019 rated it liked it
It was fine, but I thought the anti-fandom sentiment was a little intense. I've been working in middle school for years, and pretty much everyone likes Harry Potter and superhero movies. ...more
Dec 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is one of the best books I ever read!!!!
Rachel Shearer
May 19, 2021 rated it did not like it
I picked this up at the book fair for my kids because I thought it sounded fun, but the characters were so bland and the story was so boring. Did not enjoy at all.
Katie Pollock
Aug 14, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoy this YA author. The message is something we could all use. We’re happiest when we are true to ourselves.
Ms. Yingling
Mar 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
E ARC from Edelweiss Plus

Sarah Anne is an enormous fan of the books of MK Nightshade, so much so that she wins a local trivia contest and gets to compete on a panel. She completely routs the two teen boys, Chris and Ethan, who are also on the panel, since she knows the books as well as the movies. Since she is dressed in pink and a girl, however, the moderator doesn't give her equal time, and poo-poos her knowledge, even saying that her father helped her to win the contest. Sarah Anne (who goes
Laura Gardner
Apr 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thanks to author @erinmdionne and @scholasticbooks for the free book to share with @kidlitexchange! This book is out May 28!
If you're looking for a super fun read that also addresses bullying, being yourself and misogyny, this might be it. Secrets of a Fangirl is a solid book about the trials of middle school friendships and the struggle of maintaining popularity when you have an inner geek trying to escape. Sarah Anne is obsessed with the MK Nightshade series and knows it so well that she'
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I write books for tweens, teens, and anyone who survived junior high.

Please note: I have changed my review policy. I'll no longer be using the star rating system--I'm an author, not a reviewer or editor, and I'd rather support other authors by not ranking their books. I write honest (brief) reviews for each book I read, so please look to those to find out what I loved.

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