What My Mother Doesn’t Know

What My Mother Doesn't Know by Sonya SonesWhat My Mother Doesn’t Know by Sonya Sones
Simon Pulse, 259 pages

My name is Sophie.
This book is about me.
It tells the heart-stoppingly riveting story
of my first love.
And also of my second.
And, okay, my third love, too.

It’s not that I’m boy crazy.
It’s just that even though I’m almost fifteen
it’s like my mind and my body and my heart
just don’t seem to be able to agree on anything.

I heard about What My Mother Doesn’t Know by Sonya Sones from Angie, but since she wrote about it for Retro Friday, I didn’t think it would be easily available here. Imagine my surprise when I spotted this during one of my book hunts. I shouldn’t have bought much then, but I’m easily swayed.

What does Sophie’s mother doesn’t know? A lot, actually, especially the ones about her love life. Sophie is in high school and while she says she’s not boy-crazy, she can’t stop thinking about kissable lips or obsessing about her boyfriend Dylan. She also can’t stop thinking about her online guy friend Chaz. And while we’re at it, she also can’t stop wondering about awkward, unpopular boy Murphy. There’s a lot that Sophie’s mother doesn’t know, and Sonya Sones regales these things to us in this wonderful, easy-to-read novel in verse.

I’m really starting to like reading novels in verse. This is my third verse novel for the year, and they make for excellent in-between book. I read this in less than two hours, and it gave my mind an easy break after all the serious books I’ve been reading. Sophie is a good narrator, and I immediately warmed up to her. She’s popular but she’s nice, and not completely selfish. I liked her relationships with her friends and her family, especially her relationship with her mom, which I could kind of relate with. It wouldn’t be entitled this without the mother aspect, right? While it’s not as strong and dramatic as the mother aspect in A Girl Named Mister, I think it still packs a punch. I especially like this passage:


There’s this
real corny thing
that Channel 5 does every night
after the late movie,
just before the news comes on.

They flash this sign on the screen
that says:
“It’s eleven p.m.
Do you know where
your children are?”

And just now,
when it came on,
I heard this little tap tap tap on the wall
coming from my mother’s bedroom
and I tapped right back.

What My Mother Doesn’t Know is sweet and charming. Despite the less words, it was still very eloquent. Don’t be fooled by how the blurb makes the books so simple or shallow. Sonya Sones hit the nail on the head in portraying a teenage girl’s preoccupations and experiences in first (second and third) loves. This is one of comfort reads that’s quick, easy and just right. If Sonya Sones’ work are all as comforting as this, then I’m definitely getting her other books. :)

Rating: [rating=4]

2011 Challenge Status:
Required Reading – July

My copy: paperback from Fully Booked

Cover and blurb: Goodreads

Other reviews:
Book Harbinger

4 Thoughts on “What My Mother Doesn’t Know

  1. I was so tempted to get a copy of this when I saw that it’s available in Fully Booked! But I still haven’t read Lisa Schroeder’s Chasing Brooklyn and Far From You so I put off getting a copy until I’ve read those. Novels in verse are fun, right? I love how easy they are to read but still very meaningful.

    • Oh, there, I’m also tempted to get Lisa Schroeder’s books! :) I think her topics are a bit more serious? I’m also curious about Ellen Hopkins’ series now, since they’re in verse, too. :)

  2. You are so right – novels in verse ARE excellent in-between books. I love reading them when I feel a book slump coming on as well, or when I’m getting all stressed about Mount TBR and almost shutting down. I read this a few weeks before I had my girl and it was perfect light reading for my tired, anxious state.

    Sonya Sones does have the angst teenage girl down. I really connected to Sophie.

    I have a copy of WHAT MY GIRLFRIEND DOESN’T KNOW that I’ve been saving for just the right time. :)

    • Finishing a (verse) book in a day is a good confidence booster! I like it whenever I put a book I read from my TBR pile to the read pile. :D

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