Friday, October 7, 2011

Review: The DUFF by Kody Keplinger

Title: The DUFF
Author: Kody Keplinger
Publisher:  Little Brown/ Poppy
Age Group: Young Adult
Category: Contemporary
Release date: September 7th, 2010
Pages:  280 (Hardcover)
Rating: 5 out of 5
Source: RAK

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.

It seems as though I knew I would connect with this book from the moment I turned the first page.  From the first time Bianca gets called "The Duff", I knew that over the years, I felt the same.  I was the Duff of my friends.  Designated.  Ugly.  Fat.  Friend.

Bianca doesn't have a life to complain of.  She's got two of the best friends she could ask for and above average grades.  Although her friends have very different personalities and interests, she spends many weekends at the club with them, being the responsible one.  One night, one of the most popular boys (with the ladies, if you know what I mean) takes a seat next to her, striking up a conversation.  It turns out that he was doing so in order for her friends to notice and become attracted to him for taking pity on their "ugly fat friend".  Here is where The Duff comes in.  Wesley, the playboy, calls her "The Duff" and explains why, leaving Bianca even more irritated.  The thing is that over the next few days- months, even- she can't get the term out of her head.

I love Bianca.  She's sarcastic and witty and although she's got an attitude and she's quite pessimistic, it's refreshing not to read about someone who's whiny and unable to take care of themselves.  The friendship in this story sounds very familiar to my friendship with my best friend.  We've been there for each other since we were in kindergarten and we're very honest with each other, like Bianca and Casey.

Wesley was definitely not my favorite character at first.  I kept thinking, "What a dick!  Please, Bianca, stay away."  But now I realize that Wesley and Bianca really were perfect for each other.  They both seemed stubborn, lost, and intelligent.  After all, they helped each other through tough times.  The chemistry between these characters was very realistic, so kudos to Kody for that!

The book is everything I hoped it would be.  It was sexy, perfectly paced, and real.   
Have you read it?  Reviewed it?  Leave a comment/ link to a review so I can find out what you thought!

1 comment:

  1. I have this book sitting on my shelf, but I haven't gotten to it yet. I'm glad that you liked it! Perhaps I'll have to move it closer to the top of the stack. Thanks for the review!