• The Geeks Shall Inherit the Earth

  • Popularity, Quirk Theory, and Why Outsiders Thrive After High School
  • By: Alexandra Robbins
  • Narrated by: Kathleen McInerney
  • Length: 15 hrs and 4 mins
  • 3.8 out of 5 stars (97 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

In a smart, entertaining, reassuring book that reads like fiction, Alexandra Robbins manages to cross Gossip Girl with Freaks and Geeks and explain the fascinating psychology and science behind popularity and outcasthood. She reveals that the things that set students apart in high school are the things that help them stand out later in life.

Robbins follows seven real people grappling with the uncertainties of high-school social life, including:

  • The Loner, who has withdrawn from classmates since they persuaded her to unwittingly join her own hate club
  • The Popular Bitch, a cheerleading captain both seduced by and trapped within her clique’s perceived prestige
  • The Nerd, whose differences cause students to laugh at him and his mother to needle him for not being “normal”
  • The New Girl, determined to stay positive as classmates harass her for her mannerisms and target her because of her race
  • The Gamer, an underachiever in danger of not graduating, despite his intellect and his yearning to connect with other students
  • The Weird Girl, who battles discrimination and gossipy politics in school but leads a joyous life outside of it
  • The Band Geek, who is alternately branded too serious and too emo, yet annually runs for class president

In the middle of the year, Robbins surprises her subjects with a secret challenge—experiments that force them to change how classmates see them.

Robbins intertwines these narratives—often triumphant, occasionally heartbreaking, and always captivating—with essays exploring subjects like the secrets of popularity, being excluded doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with you, why outsiders succeed, how schools make the social scene worse—and how to fix it.

©2011 Alexandra Robbins (P)2011 Hyperion

What listeners say about The Geeks Shall Inherit the Earth

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Not what I expected...

Would you try another book from Alexandra Robbins and/or Kathleen McInerney?

Not likely.

Performance was fine, content not what I expected.

Any additional comments?

I expected this to be more academic and applicable to dealing with teenagers. I had hoped for more of a

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

A Good thesis, maybe overstated.

The main thesis is a valid and valuable one. Society needs its cafeteria fringe people to advance and have positive changes. However, I wonder at the distaste for conformity.

Conformity is not always a bad thing, nor is a lack of conformity always a good thing. The question is whether we courageously seek the truth and what really works, whether that is accepted by the culture or not.

2 people found this helpful