Literature / Evolution Me And Other Freaks Of Nature

Evolution, Me & Other Freaks of Nature is a 2007 young adult novel written by Robin Brande. The story follows high school freshman Mena Reece, who has just been excommunicated from her fundamentalist church. She faces bullying from her former church friends, especially her former best friend Teresa. Things get even more dramatic when her biology teacher, Ms. Shepherd starts a unit on evolution, prompting the church kids to stage a protest in favor of Intelligent Design. Meanwhile, Mena starts to develop feelings for her lab partner, Casey Connor.


This novel provides examples of:

  • Alpha Bitch: Teresa.
  • Ambiguously Gay: In a later chapter, Mena wonders if Denny was actually even gay at all, but then adds if he was then who's business is it to anyone that bullied him.
  • Affectionate Nickname: Kayla and Casey are called "K" and "C" by their mother respectively.
  • Break the Cutie: Mena, having her old friends hate and bully her at school, her parents barely register her existence at home, and has to continuously lie to her parents so she can see her only friends.
  • Broken Tears: Bethany has these when she sees the Bible Grrrl Sez column in the school paper and when confronting Mena on why she told people about Denny.
    • Mena and her mother following Pastor Wells's sermon and in Mena's confessional.
  • Cure Your Gays: How the church responded to gay student, Denny Pierce.
  • Disappeared Dad: Casey and Kayla's father died of cancer three years before the events of the novel.
  • Deadpan Snarker: All of the main characters have their moments.
  • Driven to Suicide: Denny, thankfully his parents caught him before he went through with it.
  • Expy: Very similar to the young adult novel "Speak."
  • Faux Affably Evil: Mena comments that Bethany, while she took part in Denny's bullying, had pure intentions and her heart was in the right place because she thought she was helping him, Mena can't even bring herself to dislike her and even say if she were dying, she'd want Bethany to hold her hand.
  • Hipster: Kayla and her friends.
  • The Fundamentalist: Everyone at Mena's church.
  • I Have Boobs, You Must Obey!: Teresa's modus operandi.
  • Raven Hair Ivoryskin: A trait Casey and Kayla inherited from their mother.
  • Shown Their Work: For fundamentalist Christian culture, and biology. The author was raised Fundamentalist Baptist, and sat in on high school biology classes as research.
  • Sinister Minister: Pastor Wells.
  • Nerds Are Sexy
  • Official Couple: Mena and Casey. Also Kayla and Josh.
  • Precision F-Strike: Mena's mom gets one after Pastor Wells publicly humiliates her in front of the whole congregation.
  • She's Not My Girlfriend: Casey says this word for word when Kayla calls Mena his girlfriend.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Bethany.
  • Wham Line: "MS SHEPHERD GOES TO CHURCH?"
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