The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks


How did I get it?:
Requested from Hot Key Books, many thanks to them for the copy!

Previously reviewed by the same author:
We Were Liars


Frankie Landau-Banks at age 14:
Debate Club.
Her father’s “bunny rabbit.”
A mildly geeky girl attending a highly competitive boarding school.

Frankie Landau-Banks at age 15:
A knockout figure.
A sharp tongue.
A chip on her shoulder.
And a gorgeous new senior boyfriend: the supremely goofy, word-obsessed Matthew Livingston.

Frankie Laundau-Banks.
No longer the kind of girl to take “no” for an answer.
Especially when “no” means she’s excluded from her boyfriend’s all-male secret society.
Not when her ex boyfriend shows up in the strangest of places.
Not when she knows she’s smarter than any of them.
When she knows Matthew’s lying to her.
And when there are so many, many pranks to be done.

Frankie Landau-Banks, at age 16:
Possibly a criminal mastermind.

This is the story of how she got that way.


I was very hesitant about starting this book as I didn’t ‘get’ We Were Liars by the same author. I just could not connect with the book. I like to give an author another go though, because I do think sometimes it can just be that particular book that I didn’t gel with. I’m happy to say I enjoyed The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks a lot more than We Were Liars.

Frankie Landau-Banks is an interesting character. I didn’t particularly get to like her, even though there was technically nothing wrong with her. She’s pretty (but only recently so… ), rich and not cruel to other girls. The lack of bitchiness technically should have made me like her, but I just could not get on with her. Still, she was interesting to read about. Frankie is starting her sophomore year at a private high school. She had previously been living in the shadow of her sister, but now her sister has headed off to Berkeley for college, she can shine. Frankie has developed into a pretty, curvy girl over the summer and has finally captured the attention of Matthew Livingston who is popular and gorgeous. I have to admit, I wasn’t overly keen on Matthew either. I didn’t like the way he treated Frankie. Frankie discovers that Matthew is part of a secret society of boys who play pranks at the school. Frankie gets mad that she’s not able to be included in this society and schemes to get even with the boys!

To me, this book seemed like Frankie was trying to show herself as better than any of the other girls at her school and prove herself to the boys. It seemed like there was nothing more to Frankie than that, even though you’re constantly reminded how clever she is. I found her to be more cunning than clever.

I personally think that E.Lockhart’s writing is good. I can see why some people love it, yet others can’t get on with it. I’ve seen E.Lockhart’s prose described as flowery and I can see why that comparison has been made.

Throughout this story some mention to Michel Foucault’s Discipline and Punish was made which really made me smile having studied Education Studies at University and read the text in question. I do wonder if this was too much info dump to include in the story, but I understood where E.Lockhart was going with the inclusion of the Panoptican.

Would I recommend it?:

I had a much better reading experience with this book. I think it will divide people, but it’s certainly an interesting contemporary read!


12 thoughts on “The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks

  1. We Were Liars was SO different from all of this authors other books. It really surprised me. I have to say if you liked this one, you’ll like The Boyfriend List even more… it’s SO good. Frankie got on my nerves a little bit, but Ruby is down-right hilarious 🙂

  2. I actually really like we were liars (I got super into it and am pretty sure the ending ruined my life), so I was so excited to see this book on your blog. Im so looking forward to reading it. Thanks for sharing! ❤ Bee @ Bee Reads Books

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