One of the few advantages of being sick is more reading time. So, being couch bound, surrounded by kleenex, herbal tea, and bland rice crackers, I managed to marginally whittle down my precariously high pile of books to read.
The Duff: designated ugly fat friend by Kody Keplinger is one of the ones now on my giveaway pile. This is a book sent along by my agent Suzie Townsend of FinePrint Literary Management. According to the back copy on the ARC (advanced reading copy) Kody Keplinger is younger than my kids (yikes) so it wasn't a big surprise that she has her finger on the pulse of the high school scene. But what did surprise me was Ms. Keplinger's ability to handle a complex plot and an interesting set of richly drawn characters with such sophistication.
This debut novel about being the designated ugly fat friend is a great read. The main character, 17 year old Bianca Piper is a smart, sassy, cynic considered the "duff" by high school hottie Wesley Rush. The "manwhore" of the school plans to use Bianca to hit on her two friends. The tables get turned in a most interesting way though, and Wesley finds that two can play the using game. There's a whole lot more going on in this debut novel, but I'll let you discover the rest for yourselves. Yes, The Duff has a few of the failings of a first novel (I should know...been there done that), but WOW! This is a girl who can write. Enjoy her first book when it comes out in September and definitely watch for the next.