Not My Fault | Critical Book Review

In the realm of YA novels, SB Frasca’s “Not My Fault” unfolds as a sparkling tale of a quirky, endearing teen navigating the intricate path of social justice through the lens of art.

A Mosaic of Adolescent Emotions

Told through the lively voice of tenth-grader Hy, the narrative captures the rollercoaster of teenage emotions – from exuberance and amusement to disappointment and bewilderment. Hy, like any other adolescent, dreams of artistic acclaim while grappling with the mundane aspects of life, such as riding bikes, petting family dogs, and the perpetual struggle with punctuation. Frasca skillfully handles the uncertainties of adolescence with a blend of humor and gentleness.

Home Front: Absence, Snacks, and Substitute Fathers

Within the confines of Hy’s home, a unique family dynamic unfolds with Mom at the helm and an absent Dad. The novel explores the delicate balance of familial relationships, punctuated by the forbidden allure of snacks and an unlikely friendship with Mr. Fadikar, the purveyor of coveted goodies. Hy’s connection with the kind store owner assumes an almost paternal role, adding a poignant layer to the narrative.

Teenhood Chronicles: Friendship, Names, and Gender Dynamics

Hy’s closest relationship at school is with the intriguing eleventh-grader Belinda, whose unplanned pregnancy thrusts her into a realm beyond typical teenage concerns. Hy, grappling with an unconventional name and societal expectations, navigates the complexities of gender dynamics with a sharp wit and a refusal to conform.

“Not My Fault”: A Motto of Resilience

The phrase “Not my fault” becomes a recurring motif in Hy’s life, appearing in Latin and Hindi, languages unfamiliar to the protagonist. Hy, driven by a fervent desire for justice, incorporates this motto into a mural, defending Mr. Fadikar from ridicule. The phrase serves as a powerful reminder that in a world full of uncertainties, one cannot always be held responsible for crossing unseen lines.

Universal Appeal: A Teen’s Reflection on Responsibility

The novel’s exploration of hard choices, loss, and social awkwardness transcends the boundaries of age. Hy’s insightful observations on the fine line between humor and hurt feelings resonate with readers of all ages. “Not My Fault” becomes a mirror reflecting the shared human experience of grappling with the unknown, confronting mistakes, and finding strength in humor.

Conclusion: A Compelling Exploration of Teenage Realities

“Not My Fault” successfully weaves together themes of adolescence, making it an engaging read for both young adults and those reminiscing about the trials and tribulations of teenage years. SB Frasca’s narrative, voiced through the spunky and well-meaning Hy, invites readers to empathize with the universal journey of growing up.

Publisher, Genre, Print Length, ISBN:

PublisherGenrePrint LengthISBN
Young Adult / Contemporary272 pages9781667896779

In the realm of YA novels, SB Frasca’s “Not My Fault” unfolds as a sparkling tale of a quirky, endearing teen navigating the intricate path of social justice through the lens of art. A Mosaic of Adolescent Emotions Told through the lively voice of tenth-grader Hy, the narrative captures the rollercoaster of teenage emotions –…