Storky: How I Lost My Nick­name and Won the Girl

D. L. Garfinkle
  • Review
By – August 6, 2012
A tru­ly fun­ny book! Writ­ten in the jour­nal entry style à la Angus, Thongs, and Full Frontal Snog­ging, it will make any­one who has ever been a high school fresh­man laugh every few pages. The diary fol­lows the first year in high school for Michael Storky” Pomer­antz, as he tries to lose his nick­name, get a girl­friend, and learn about mak­ing the right choic­es in life. Unfor­tu­nate­ly he is not only sad­dled with a use­less divorced Dad in the throes of a mid-life cri­sis, but oth­er calami­tous events in the life of a 14-year old: the uncon­trol­lable male body part he nick­names Rex” (who caus­es embar­rass­ing things to hap­pen while he is try­ing to impress girls at the black­board with his Span­ish skills), a mom who begins dat­ing (gasp!) the pudgy fam­i­ly den­tist, a friend who intro­duces him to alco­hol, and Michael’s own age-appro­pri­ate mus­ings and won­der­ings about sex. First-time author Deb­o­rah Garfin­kle (note that the pub­lish­er uses the J.K. Rowl­ing-style don’t‑let-the-boys- know-it-was-writ­ten-by-a-woman” name change), gets into the head of a smart, sar­cas­tic and sen­si­tive young teen with great skill. The char­ac­ter of Michael is unmis­tak­ably Jew­ish and liv­ing a very mid­dle-class, three-times-a-year, Reform Jew­ish exis­tence in San Diego. Librar­i­ans: beware of the matu­ri­ty of the themes, but know there are many young high-school­ers who will be pass­ing this hilar­i­ous book from hand to hand and wait­ing most impa­tient­ly for a sequel. Rec­om­mend­ed for ages 13 – 16.
Lisa Sil­ver­man is direc­tor of Sinai Tem­ple’s Blu­men­thal Library in Los Ange­les and a for­mer day school librar­i­an. She is the for­mer chil­dren’s book review edi­tor of Jew­ish Book World.

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