April 12, 2011

The Duff - Kody Keplinger

The DUFF: (Designated Ugly Fat Friend)
Young Adult
Pages: 288
Publisher: Poppy
Release Date: September 7, 2010

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.

Okay, so this book and I did not connect... at first. It was so weird, and I'll try to explain the best I can. It starts off with this hateful snob who thinks she's better than everyone, spitting out cuss words for no reason, and acting as childish as a teen can act, thus contradicting all her supposed utter intelligence. Then she's told she's a duff, which basically means she the ugly, fat one in her posse, and she starts having delirious self-esteem issues while dealing in the worst possible way with her family's crisis. Not a book for me, right?

Here's where it gets interesting: I wanted to stop reading, I wanted to sincerely say I did not enjoy this read. But it was like a bad gossip... you can't stop yourself from wanting to hear it. You know you shouldn't, but geez, it's just such good gossip material! From a certain point on, I was glued to the book til the very last page. I know this is totally contradicting, but what can I say? Definitely a very, very guilty pleasure. I could totally relate with Bianca when she says she's ashamed of secretly watching Gossip Girl. That's how I felt reading this. Like I should hide it from my smarter self, if that makes any sense.

The book includes explicit sex, constant cussing, meaningless underage sex, parental abuse, etc. All issues that would normally draw me in, but they were taken in such a bubbly brain-dead way, that it was just annoying. And yes by annoying I mean I kept helplessly reading because I needed to know what happens and just ended up enjoying the whole thing. I'm probably not making any sense, but that's how I felt. The plot was probably the high point.

For those of you who just love a guilty pleasure, and like me, enjoy reading about friends with benefits, you might like this one.


  1. HA! When I read that last line I didn't see the 'reading' part & only saw 'enjoy friends with benefits' I was like whoa Sab!! It is entirely way too early for me to be reading reviews :P

    I was really looking forward to this one for months before it came out, and it kind of disappointed me. Bianca just wasn't the character for me even though I totally got where she stood if that makes sense. Overall I liked it, but I get what you mean in this review.

  2. Great Review.I wanted to read this book so adding it to my already overloaded TBR list.Thanks for the review.

  3. I really couldn't stand this book, so I know EXACTLY what you're saying :)

  4. I actually really liked it. I guess I understood Bianca's need to lose herself in something in order not to deal with her problems. And I liked how she made the term "DUFF" her own.

  5. It is bad that I'm happy when I see a borderline bad review of this book? I liked it to a certain point, I really did, but I totally share your sentiments. I was glued to the book, but it just left a bad taste in my mouth. Am I supposed to find Wesley's attitude sexy? I just... can't. I feel like the whole thing sends a really bad message. You can't expect that a guy who would treat girls the way he does would just up and change, or turn out to be the sensitive, misunderstood bad guy, because that just doesn't happen much in Real Life. Okay, so I think I'll stop babbling now, haha, but I'm always relieved when I see I'm not the only one who just did not adore this book at all.

  6. Oh dear. This is interesting...
    I might try this, but I'm a little hesitant!

  7. I tried, I really did, but this book and I never connected. Not once. Nice review dude.

  8. It sounded interesting, from the description, but after your review, I think I'm going to give it a pass. There are a lot of good books out there that ARE cleaner. I don't like graphic YA books. :) Good for you for giving it a chance, though.


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