Book| The Duff by Kody Keplinger
Genre(s)| Young Adult / Contemporary / Romance
Date of Publication| Movie Tie-in Edition – 25th February, 2015
My Rating | 4 (very well-deserved) STARS
Book(s) – The Duff by Kody Keplinger
Feels–SO MANY FEELS SO MANY AMAZING FEELS
Tears – None
-I received a free galley of this book from NetGalley but this did not affect the review in any way-
The Duff. Designated. Ugly. Fat. Friend.
I’m honestly not sure if this book was the reason the term came into being, if so, then that is amazing. This is not so much a review as it is what I loved about the book. If you need to have a look at the blurb, I’ll link you right here to the Goodreads one.
The book is nothing if not realistic. Kody Keplinger was 19 when she wrote this and she has finally managed to capture the actual teen girl in her book. From Bianca’s sassiness, to her escape methods, to the wrong decisions she makes to the things she overcomes, this book has such an honest feel to it.
I read this on a day when I was feeling extremely low, I felt like the DUFF of my group. And Bianca was so much like me in comparison to her friends that I began to relate to her almost immediately. But even then, even though Bianca was all ‘I-don’t-like-parties’, there was no shaming of her friends who did, just simple observation of how people who like different things can also be best friends.
The plot was just right, not too overdone, and not too little. A perfect blend of humour (there were several LOL moments) and teenage angst, sprinkled with what we know as hormones and feelings, the book grasped the fucking idea pretty damn well.
Wesley, our hero was very, very honest and upfront about his sexual activities. From the time he mentioned how he’d have sex with anyone, irrespective of how they looked because sex is sex and is supposed to make you feel good, I knew this one had brains. He was also very hot, and that didn’t make matters worse either.
Bianca and Wesley = Explosions, and it was bloody amazing to read about. From seeing them go from enemies to sort-of-friends with benefits to lovers, the book had me hooked throughout. I laughed and cried and marvelled at how real the book was. Problems were dealt with maturely, and best thing was – the high-school-popular-girl-is-a-bitch trope was changed so beautifully that I was beside myself. Vicki, the popular girl in school was a good supporting character too.
Every single supporting character had a lot to shape in the book. And I loved them all dearly. I finished the book in less than six hours, and that included giving and exam in the middle of it all. Told you, I wasn’t having a good day, but this book cheered me up immensely. You did well, Keplinger, loved this masterpiece of yours.
And now, since I read the movie tie-in edition ARC, I also watched the film. And I have some things to say.
First of all – WHAT THE FUCK.
Who let those bloody people butcher the plot like that? They made Bianca and Wesley neighbours, he calls her The DUFF and how does she react? By asking him for help with a makeover!
THE BOOK BIANCA PROMOTED SELF-LOVE, SELF-ESTEEM AND POSITIVE BODY IMAGE, but fuck the good messages yeah, Hollywood? In the book Bianca really came across as someone everyone would be inspired by, would learn good things from. In the movie, they made her a cross between an Easy A reject and a Mean Girls groupie. Her best friends who play major parts in the book made cameo appearances in the film because she dumped them both four or maybe fourteen minutes into the film. They also made fun of her choice of clothes, dragged her to stuff she didn’t want to go to and were crappy friends to a crappy person.
The mean girl trope angered me to no reason. Madison was created as the Regina George of The Duff world and man, did she live up to it. From posting videos to being a real Class-A bitch, she did it all. She even got left up on stage by Wesley, our charming manwhore who falls for the nerd who has a transformation during Homecoming. Such a novel plot, however did the makers think of this?
Other than the character names, the very, very faint skeleton of the plot, the movie was absolute rubbish at sticking to things. Of course, if watched alone, it was probably an average teen flick, but this was the movie adaptation of a great book and they spectacularly ruined it.
Sigh. Stop Hollywood from butchering books, 2015.
Until next time,