Jupiter Glazer’s parents emigrated from Russia when he was seven years old. Now, at 14, he’s feeling the burn. He doesn’t understand what he’s doing wrong—why broom-closet rendezvouses with girls don’t seem to be happening, why his teachers can’t understand his English, and why he and his best friend Vadim can’t seem to fit in, either with the indie-music-obsessed Americans or the otherworldly, leather- jacket cool Russians kids at school.
Maybe it has to do with their X-Men addiction and their near-obsessive behavior reading the blogs of their classmates. Or maybe it has to do with life dealing Jupiter the worst hand of cards ever. He’s named after a dead Roman god, his hair is on permanent Jew-fro status, and his parents live in the only housing that the Philadelphia Jewish Federation could find them—the top floor of an industrial warehouse.
Then Jupiter discovers the city. And then, forced to become a social animal by his sudden accidental sidekicks—a speed freak who’s never touched drugs in his life, a gay metal-head named Bates, and the most untouchably hot JAP in East Falls—Jupiter turns into the most popular kid in school. And realizes that, maybe, being a loser isn’t so bad . . . if he can just figure out how to stop being so popular.