Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Book Review: Sloppy Firsts, by Megan McCafferty

Sloppy Firsts is a cute, snarky, fun book. Megan McCafferty has created a truly memorable character in Jessica Darling.

Jessica’s best friend, Hope, has moved away and Jessica cannot get over it. There’s no other person who can take Hope’s place, and Jessica is suffering from depression. She pretends to be friends with Manda, Sara, and Bridget, but she’s only faking. When Hy moves in from New York, it seems that she and Jessica might have something in common, but Hy ends up spending more and more time with Manda, Sara, and Bridget.

Everyone thinks Jessica should be going out with Scotty. He’s the perfect boyfriend for her. But Jessica doesn’t agree. Then there’s Marcus. Why is he acting so strangely towards Jessica? She can’t imagine being friends with Marcus (AKA Krispy Kreme) who is a drug addict and was involved in the death of Hope’s brother, Heath. But why does he keep appearing in her life?

It took me a while to get into this story. I feel like, at the beginning of the book, nothing ever happened. There were “situations” that Jessica had to explain, but no real pace.  I really (once again) hate Jessica’s parents for being so STUPID. The doctor TELLS her mother that Jessica needs to see a psychologist, and Jessica says “I don’t want to” and Mom says, “OK.” They are just extremely na├»ve about Jessica’s feelings. I wish there were an alternate plot point that could allow this story to be told, besides the usual absent parents.

McCafferty wrote the teen voice perfectly. Jessica is a very authentic 16-year-old. There are interesting references to pop culture, and the language of the time is very accurate. I enjoyed the humor, and especially like that Jessica is smart. This isn’t a book about the nerd being bullied – Jessica is a strong, smart girl who has a life. Even though she is having problems at this point, they are of Jessica’s own making, not because of the way some mean girls treat her (which seems to be a common theme lately in books I’ve been reading.)

Once Jessica begins talking to Marcus, I thought the pace of the book took off, and I thoroughly enjoyed the rest of this story. It ended on a bit of a cliffhanger, but since I already have the rest of the series, this didn’t annoy me too much.

Recommended for teen girls who can relate to a smart, funny character just trying to make her way through some typical, but tough, high school situations.

Published by Broadway, 2001
Copy purchased for my Kindle
297 pages

Rating: 3/5

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  1. Happy you read this book (one of my faves!) ... loved hearing your thoughts, and I'm glad you mentioned my favorite thing about McCafferty's books: She REALLY know the teen voice.

  2. This is a really cute review! I haven't heard of this before, but I'm adding it to my already toppling over pile of TBR books! Thanks for your review!

    Happy Reading!

  3. Seems like a cute, fun book! Another addition to my giant TBR pile :D


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