Ariel Kaplan’s We Regret to Inform You is a compelling novel about every highly motivated college applicant’s worst nightmare. High school senior Mischa Abramavicius should have had it made. She goes to a tony prep school on scholarship where she’s a star student. But when college acceptances start rolling in and her classmates are accepted to places like Harvard and Princeton, Mischa gets nothing but rejections. She doesn’t even get into her safety school, Paul Revere University.
Shocked and ashamed to tell her single mother, Mischa visits Revere’s admissions office and discovers that her transcript has been altered. But her original transcript is in order, leading Mischa to realize that something fishy is going on. With help from her best friend, Nate, and a group of hacker girls who call themselves the Ophelia Syndicate, Mischa begins to dig deeper.
As unlikely as this all sounds, Kaplan makes everything seem believable with the help of her wisecracking yet thoughtful narrator. Without any college acceptances, Mischa begins to question her very identity. But as she gets to the bottom of her application disaster, she also re-examines her dreams, goals and all-consuming pursuit of success.
We Regret to Inform You is an entertaining look at the college admissions rat race that includes crime, a cover-up and plenty of heart and soul.