Thursday, September 16, 2010
Review: The DUFF (Designated Ugly Fat Friend) by Kody Keplinger
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.
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.
Review: This book was a wonderful debut novel! It's books like this that make me love reading contemporary fiction. An original plot, real characters, and smart, witty dialogue.
The plot was very well paced. Not too slow but not too fast. My only "plot-problem" was with Bianca's mom and Jake. I was hoping there would be a little more to each, especially Jake. It seemed like there was a lot of build up around him and then nothing really happened.
The characters were wonderful! I love the fact that Bianca was a cynic. It's nice to not always have a happy protagonist. I loved how Bianca talks about love and also what it means to be the DUFF. It definitely let me see more of who she is. Her friends were also good. My only problem with them is that I kept getting them mixed up. They seemed to be two very different people yet I couldn't keep them straight.
I loved watching Bianca and Wesley grow throughout the book. I could definitely see the changes: Bianca starting as a hater of the world and ending as a little less hateful, and Wesley going from a chasee to a chaser.
This is one of those books that you can pretty much see how it ends, but don't quite know how it gets there. The dialogue never seemed forced or unnatural and the characters were great. All in all, if
Ms. Keplinger keeps it up, she could have a pretty good future in books.