Apr 032024

The Bulletin: Inspired by a viewing of the 1996 film The First Wives Club, Ezra and his two best friends decide to get revenge on their terrible ex-boyfriends. Among the ensuing hijinks, Ezra anonymously uploads a TikTok video setting fire to his closeted ex’s letterman jacket, which quickly goes viral at their school. Further videos of school administrators enforcing their Watch What You Say initiative, which targets queer students and the expression of their identities, also go viral, and the trio begins to realize they can use all this attention to get their voices heard, carve out a place for themselves, and achieve something greater than their own revenge. Ezra narrates this funny, frothy Moxie read-alike, featuring a side cast of Ezra’s unfailingly supportive single dad, a warm, encouraging set of friends, and Ezra’s new hot jock crush (conveniently replacing his former hot jock boyfriend). The revenge antics are entertaining, but like their cinematic inspiration, the boys eventually channel their efforts into standing up for themselves and others, showcasing the power people have when they come together. Some readers should be cautious as Ezra’s disordered eating habits and negative body image are potentially triggering, but the ultimate message, as Ezra’s dad puts it, is that weight “doesn’t change your value.” Ezra bravely faces harassment, oppression from authority figures, and his own insecurities in this inspiring and uplifting story.