Little Brown/Poppy, September 2010
So I first heard about this book because it's a 2010 Debut, but became more interested in it after visiting thecontemps.com and learning a bit more about the book. I was incredibly excited to find in on the shelves at my local indie a few days before it's September release date! So of course I snagged a copy.
Seventeen-year-old Bianca Piper is cynical and loyal, and she doesn't think she's the prettiest of her friends by a long shot. She's also way too smart to fall for the charms of man-slut and slimy school hottie Wesley Rush. In fact, Bianca hates him. And when he nicknames her "Duffy," she throws her Coke in his face.I have to start with the voice of this novel; I absolutely loved Kody's voice from the first page. It just felt like an honest teenager, not preachy or trying to hip and edgy. It was incredibly refreshing to read something so realistic. Kody didn't shy away from anything here or gloss over the difficult situations teens face. And she managed to be funny and clever throughout the whole thing. Plus Kody is only 19 and wrote the book when she was only 17! Can you believe it!?! She is an absolutely amazing writer and I can't wait to read her next book and see how her wonderful voice grows and changes.
But things aren't so great at home right now. Desperate for a distraction, Bianca ends up kissing Wesley. And likes it. Eager for escape, she throws herself into a closeted enemies-with-benefits relationship with Wesley.
Until it all goes horribly awry. It turns out that Wesley isn't such a bad listener, and his life is pretty screwed up, too. Suddenly Bianca realizes with absolute horror that she's falling for the guy she thought she hated more than anyone. From Goodreads site
Bianca is one of my new favorite characters. I loved her right away because she's so sarcastic and a bit caustic at times, which is exactly how I was in High School (maybe still am a bit), so I related to her immediately. She's so honest about how she feels and what she's thinking, even when she's trying to run from her feelings her voice is still honest and realistic. You can't help but feel like you're right there with her. Beyond Bianca's character, the concept of the book really draws you in. Who honestly hasn't felt like the DUFF? To have such an honest voice about dealing with that feeling and realizing that you're not the DUFF that everyone feels that way sometimes, is just so wonderful. I really wish this book had come out when I was in high school.
So I have to say just a bit about the sex scenes. My biggest issue with a lot of YA realistic fiction is that the sex scenes or sexually situations are too racy and unrealistic or more often that they are glossed over in a way that is just ridiculous. Kody has written some really great sex scenes, I must say. It's not that there's a ton of detail or the book's super sexual, they're just real (and totally hot). There's nothing fake or over done about them; this is the way to write sex scenes for teens today (or even girls in their 20s).
I talked Friday about how much I love this cover, in Beautiful Covers (2), so we'll gloss over the details and just say it's totally awesome. I can only say good things about this book; already told a few friends that they had to read it now and stop reading whatever else they are currently reading.
Get this book immediately and begin reading