Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Review: The DUFF by Kody Keplinger

The DUFF by Kody Keplinger
Published by Little Brown
Date Published: September 7, 2010
Rating: 5/5 stars
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.

So a little while ago, Jeffrey reviewed The DUFF by Kody Keplinger and seemed kinda meh about it. However, I just read it and I LOVED it. So I begged Jeremy to let me do a girl-dueling review. Luckily, he let me!

Here’s what I loved:
First of all, this isn’t a super complex story with a million OMGEE! plot twists and cliffhangers. It went for simplicity and still nailed a compelling story. Honestly, it’s a basic story that I think would be very well translated into a film. No, really. Hey, Hollywood, I’m giving a good idea here!

Anyway, the characters are full and believable and all of the backstory comes around and gives it a fully complete sense. And as a writer, I’ll tell you, it is CRAZY hard to achieve that. Now I personally don’t care about this little aspect, but I feel I should mention it anyway. Yeah, there is a pretty significant amount of cussing... so what?

Now, that all being said, here is what “got” me. Here’s what sucked me in so badly to where I stayed up till 2:30am finishing it, knowing well and good I had to be up at 7:30am for work. I admit it, I am a romantic. An ooey-gooey, bleeding heart romantic that was raised off too many perfect moment in Disney films.

Well, the book doesn’t start off in that mind set, it’s starts off almost anti-love and sex-is-for-pleasure. But without ruining the end, I’ll say that it left me more warm and fuzzy than a droopy-eyed pink dog that barks “I Wuv You” on Valentine’s Day. I wish I was exaggerating. Now you can see as to why I’m so mystified at why people didn’t like it. Okay, it might not be the best boy bait. A story about a girl with a crappy home life, high school drama and body image issues isn’t exactly going to appeal to most guys, but I found it snarky, sweet and even refreshing!

I’d mainly recommend this to girls. Especially if you’re a bleeding heart romantic, raised off of Disney, like myself, read it! And for anyone who wants a FAST read. No joke. I read this in like 4 hours. Super quick! I think I will certainly read anything Keplinger writes!


  1. Dear Jennifer,

    I'm an "ooey-gooey bleeding heart romantic" as well, and even with Jeffrey's scathing review (okay, it wasn't scathing, it was MEH), I still somewhat wanted to read this book. Only because the whole concept of a "DUFF" is not far from the truth, and actually exists in young social circles (breaks my heart), and I'd love that this author explored it through fiction. You have reaffirmed my desire to read this book - I shall re-add it to my "to-read" list.

    Thank you Jennifer, for your post. And THANK YOU Jeffrey, for allowing Jennifer to offer her review on a book you've already reviewed. YOU ROCK!!! :)

    Twitter: @inluvwithbookz

  2. pfft...what does Jeffrey know :-p I personally loved this book. I wish there were a little more consequences towards the self destructive behavior but still I am a hopeless romantic at hear too. So of course I was happy with a happy ending.

  3. Great review! I so agree with you. This book is too awesome for words! :D The only thing i wasn't quite so happy with was ending. It didn't feel right.


  4. I was raised on Disney and I couldn't wait to get my hands on this book! I loved the idea of a girl falling into a relationship that she's afraid is a mistake, because so many people go through that at some point. Thanks for the awesome review!