Tuesday, July 12, 2011

The DUFF 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 “the Duff,” she throws her Coke in his face.

But things aren’t so great at home right now, and Bianca is desperate for a distraction. She ends up kissing Wesley. Worse, she likes it. Eager for escape, Bianca throws herself into a closeted enemies-with-benefits relationship with him.

Until it all goes horribly awry. It turns out 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.

When I first saw this cover when the book came out, I knew I wanted to read it. And anyone who knows me would understand why. Most of my adolescence, I felt like the DUFF. Definitely. But when I read the synopsis, I wasn't sure I wanted to read a book about a girl who sleeps around with a man-whore. Not my thing.

I ended up picking this up anyway and read it in five days which for me is fast, and I really loved it. I loved Bianca's character. She was cynical and sarcastic and everything i stood for at 17 (well except for the cussing and sleeping around).

Which brings me to that. While some of the cussing was well placed and humorous, some of it was just gratuitous. I could have done without a lot of it. And then there was the sex. The scenes were actually really well written without being too descriptive and it wasn't just sex for the sake of sex. There was reason behind all of it which to me, made it worth being in the book.

Wesley was the guy I loved to hate. He is cocky and brash and gives Bianca the nickname "Duffy" which is mean and hilarious at the same time. Every time someone out of nowhere said "Well, hello Duffy," in the book I sat up a little straighter knowing I would love what would come next. I really dug the love-hate relationship of these two.

I also really enjoyed how the book ended. While I knew certain things would happen I was surprised by a lot of it. Happily surprised.

Bianca is mature and self-aware and throughout the book only became more self-aware. It was a book full of battling low self esteem and realizing that no one is alone in their insecurities and problems and screw ups.

This book is not for everyone, but it was certainly for me.

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