Coming September 7, 2010!
The DUFF is a stunning look at teenage life in an unusual, yet utterly realistic way. Kody Keplinger tackles some of the hardest and most provocative issues teens face with insight and class, treating with grace themes that could (and theoretically should) easily be painfully awkward. Bianca is tough and delightfully cynical, making her one of the most believable and lively heroines I've ever read. Every reader will wish they had a friend like Bianca, or were more like her themselves. The cast of supporting characters - both friends and enemies - round out the novel with their distinct histories and personalities, from nerdy but romantic Toby to Bianca's polar opposite best friends, the tough cheerleader with a savior complex, Casey, and naive but loving Jessica.
Wesley is infuriating and even disgusting at times, but as the story progresses Bianca (and readers) will discover some surprisingly deep and ultimately endearing layers to the passionate playboy. The unexpected spark between Bianca and Wesley is like fire and gasoline, an electric tension that will keep readers enthralled. Eventually, The DUFF takes a turn for the sweet and sentimental - a nice counterbalance to the lust and debauchery - but manages to avoid cheesiness and remain meaningful, showing both sides of the coin. The novel doesn't sugarcoat the serious issues at its core, but is still a fun and funny read that holds the appeal of true YA charm.
Click here to preorder The DUFF
Disclosure: I won an advanced copy of this novel in a contest. This did not affect my review in any way.
Coming soon: Author interview with Kody Keplinger!
This review is part of the Debut Author Challenge 2010.