Author: Kody Keplinger
Publication Date: September, 2010
Goodreads | Book Depository
I received a copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley.
Beauty really does lie in the eye of the beholder...
Seventeen-year-old Bianca Piper is smart, cynical, loyal - and well aware that she's not the hot one in her group of friends. But when high-school jock and all round moron Wesley Rush tells her she's a DUFF - a Designated, Ugly Fat Friend - Bianca does not the see funny side. She may not be a beauty but she'd never stoop so low as to go anywhere near the likes of Wesley ... Or would she? Bianca is about to find out that attraction defies looks and that sometimes your sworn enemies can become your best friends ... With a wry and tell-it-like-it-is voice, The Duff is a witty and poignant story of a teenager struggling with the rules of high school attraction, along with the breaking down of her relationships with family and friends. It is a novel about what it means to be sexy, in a world where we feel we have to be perfect!
I must have spent the majority of this book rolling my eyes.
At the beginning of the book I thought I might be able to like Bianca. She is told by the attractive popular guy, Wesley, that he is talking to her because she is the DUFF (Designated Ugly Fat Friend) and it'll make him look good to her attractive friends. So what does she do? She throws her drink in his face like he deserves. It then all goes drastically downhill from there.
Bianca finds out that her parents are getting divorced so she starts sleeping with Wesley as a distraction. I just don't get it. She said earlier in the book that she thought her parents should divorce because her mother is never around but when it happens it's this big surprising and emotional event that apparently sends her over the edge. Not to mention the fact this guy has just called you fat and ugly and told you he was using you in order to have sex with your friends. Wow, what a catch.
I might have been able to tolerate her apparent self-destruction if she was at least likable but she was mean and obnoxious a lot of the time that I just couldn't like her at all. She is supposedly worried about the divorce being a catalyst for her father to start drinking again and when it becomes apparent that that is the case, she just ignores it. She is apparently worried and scared but she doesn't do anything. She just sleeps with Wesley some more. Her mother (who was a total bitch by the way before being forgiven in record time) calls to check up on things so you'd think Bianca would admit to what's happening and get some help from an adult, right? Nope. She lies and sleeps with Wesley some more.
What do you think happens next?
Bianca starts to realise she has feelings for Wesley and doesn't want to just use him for sex. Her longtime crush Toby splits up with his girlfriend and he and Bianca suddenly strike up a friendship which turns into dating. She thinks he's a much better choice than Wesley because he's charming but she repeatedly tells us that there are no sparks and now she's using Toby as a distraction from Wesley. She also ditches her friends and acts like a bitch towards her best friend Casey who is just worried about her but Bianca is embarrassed about Wesley so avoids her and then becomes annoyed when Casey decides she's not going to keep chasing her and practically begging her to talk. But it's Casey who's being the bitch, obviously. During this time, we find out that Wesley might not be the total prick that we think he is. *sigh*
I think you can probably guess how it ends. I will say that the second half is more enjoyable than the first but not by much. I think this is definitely a book you either love or hate. Bianca is probably the most annoying character I have ever read and I think that says it all.