So this week on the Bookanistas, I'm dishing on The DUFF (Designated Ugly Fat Friend) by Kody Keplinger. First, let me just say that I'm hugely cynical, just like the MC, Bianca. I fell in love with her immediately.
Plus, dude, I was the Duff in high school for sure. In fact, I think I might still be the Duff... Ahem, anyway.
The DUFF follows cynical Bianca as she goes from hating playboy Wesley to actually caring about him. It's gritty and real, and one of the best YA books I've read all year. And I've read a lot, trust me.
Characters -- A+
I loved Bianca and her two besties. They were real and well-developed. I loved Bianca's dad. And I even enjoyed Wesley, with all his smart-aleckness. He had many layers, each more endearing than the last.
Voice -- A+
You could say that this novel has a strong teen voice because it was written by a teen. I suppose you could say that. But no matter the age of the author, the voice was spot-on. (And by the way, Kody's written a stellar piece on writing an authentic/edgy voice in YA for WriteOnCon--which is next week. So be sure to sign up and see what she has to say!)
What else I liked: the emotion. Yeah, all right. I admit it. I cried at one point in the book. And if you can make me cry, even once, even a little sniffle, you've got a winner. I'm a cynic, remember?
The DUFF comes out September 7, so make sure you get your copy. Preorder here.
Check out what else is going on in Bookanista-land this week:
Shelli Johannes-Wells Recommends PERSONAL DEMONS
Scott Tracey is Spreading Some Cover Love
Beth Revis Recommends THE ETERNAL ONES
Myra McEntire Shares the Top 10 Reasons She Loves The Mortal Instruments Series
Shannon Messenger Recommends CANDOR
Carolina Valdez Miller Recommends THE BODY FINDER
Lisa and Laura Roecker Interviews Mandy Hubbard author of YOU WISH