Saturday, September 17, 2011

Review: The Boyfriend List

Title: The Boyfriend List
Author: E. Lockhart
Published: 2005 by Delacorte Books
Obtained: Library
Ruby Oliver is 15 and has a shrink. She knows it’s unusual, but give her a break—she’s had a rough 10 days. In the past 10 days she:
 lost her boyfriend (#13 on the list),
 lost her best friend (Kim),
 lost all her other friends (Nora, Cricket),
 did something suspicious with a boy (#10),
 did something advanced with a boy (#15),
 had an argument with a boy (#14),
 drank her first beer (someone handed it to her),
 got caught by her mom (ag!),
 had a panic attack (scary),
 lost a lacrosse game (she’s the goalie),
 failed a math test (she’ll make it up),
 hurt Meghan’s feelings (even though they aren’t really friends),
 became a social outcast (no one to sit with at lunch)
 and had graffiti written about her in the girls’ bathroom (who knows what was in the boys’!?!).
But don’t worry—Ruby lives to tell the tale. And make more lists.

First Sentence:"Before anyone reading this thinks to call me a slut - or even just imagines I'm incredibly popular - let me point out that this list includes absolutely every single boy I have ever had the slightest little any-kind-of-anything with."

Once I finished reading E. Lockhart’s The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks, I knew I had to read her other books. I adore her simple-yet-complex writing style and her amazing (and funny) characters. The Boyfriend List kept perfectly with this style.

Ruby Oliver started acting differently and so her parents, who are hilariously depicted, decide to get her a shrink. This shrink has Ruby write down the names of boys she’s ever had anything, or nothing but wished it was something, with. From here the author slowly builds up our understanding of Ruby and her life, from each chapter titled a different boy’s name. Hearing her stories of the past shed insight on her character, and she also slowly tells us  the story of what happened to make her upset.

This type of plotline, taking place after the event and revisiting the past, tends to be confusing. But it also makes you read the whole book eagerly because you want to know what happened to get the character where they are now. In the last few chapters of this book, after all the boys’ stories were told, the plotline went forward because her whole past story had been shown.

I adored Ruby’s little footnotes that were extremely biased explanations for random parts of her narrative.

This is the first in a series, and I will definitely be reading the others, hoping Ruby’s life gets better, because right now, it kind of stinks.

Rating: Capture878

Content Warnings: Language, kissing.


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