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Sunday, July 11, 2010

Revell blog tour stop for Perfectly Dateless by Kristin Billerbeck (with review)

The hilarious and heartwarming story of a teen
who just wants to be normal for once.

Perfectly Dateless: A Universally Misunderstood NovelAbout the author:
Kristin Billerbeck is the bestselling, award-winning author of several novels, including What a Girl Wants. A Christy Award finalist and two-time winner of the American Christian Fiction Writers Book of the Year, Billerbeck has appeared on The Today Show and has been featured in the New York Times. She lives with her family in northern California.

About the book:

Daisy Crispin has 242 days to find the right date for the prom. There's only one problem--her parents won't let her date or even talk to a guy on the phone. Oh, and she's totally invisible at school, has to wear lame homemade clothes, and has no social skills. Okay, so maybe there's more than one problem. Can she talk her parents into letting her go to the prom? Or will they succeed at their obvious attempt to completely ruin her life? With hilarious and truthful writing, Kristin Billerbeck uncovers the small--and large--mortifications that teen girls encounter. Readers will fall in love with Daisy's sharp wit and resourcefulness as she navigates the world of boys, fashion, family, and friendship.

My review:

There were some things I enjoyed about this book and some...not so much. I loved how weird Daisy was, but not how she talked to her mother and father. I've met some rude teens in my life, but whoa, is this one more rude than most, and not just in her thoughts. It was like a Christian version of Rosanne. Remember that TV show? Anyway, I'm not all that into fashion and never have been, so some of the vanity stuff and importance of looking good in all the right brands went right over my head.

On the other hand, the whole thing with her life being a wreck was pretty fun to read, and her desire to be noticed as she experienced typical teen issues closely resembled my recollection of high school. The Christian humor was classic and will definitely be universally misunderstood if read my non-Christian teens. But that was part of what made it funny. Loved the journal rants and the author's "voice," too. This author has a quit wit with her dialog and snappy comebacks.

The overall style of the book was so classic Billerbeck. That was one of the things I liked best about it. This comment probably seems out of balance since I mentioned above what I didn't like, but that wasn't my intent. I admire Kristin's accomplishments as an author and her writing in particular, so I don't want this review taken the wrong way. Perfectly Dateless was a quick read and had some great insight, which I've come to expect from Kristin's novels. I loved the mini-sleuthing that was part of the plot, and the whole deception with the boy that she had her eyes on. Would loved to have seen a continuing storyline with her boss, Gil. The reaction from her peers to her makeover at the salon was completely skimmed over, too. Sigh.

Regardless, I loved how things worked out in the end and how Daisy learned some important things in the process. Daisy had a pretty good moral compass despite her tendency toward rudeness. So here I was smiling and feeling all happy inside, then the book was finished right when something really cool just happened (if I mention it then it will be a spoiler.) I looked inside the novel and saw no mention of a sequel. Ack! It felt so NOT over, but yet it was. Even a few more chapters would've tickled me as pink as the gorgeous cover.

I would really love to see more of this story, but fear that this will be a one book wonder. Wah! Now that I'm done fussing, I will say again that this storyline was pretty good, though I'm thinking overall I like Kristin's style better as a straight chick lit author, rather than YA. You can be as snarky as you want with your adult friends and somehow that just comes off in a better light. That said, I'll be looking for more books from this author.

**Available July 2010 from your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing group. Note: A copy of this book was provided for me to review by the publisher. I received no compensation for my written opinion regarding this book.

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