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review: “the boyfriend list” & “the boy book” challenge September 28, 2009

Posted by Katie in reviews.
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The story on the challenge (actually it’s the sequel that was challenged, but I had the original book review ready to go): “The Boy Book: A Study of Habits and Behaviors, Plus Techniques for Taming Them” — Challenged in the Keller, Texas Independent School District (2009) because some say it is “too adult for young eyes.” [From the Banned Books Week guide found online on the Illinois Library Association’s website.]

More info: CBS 11 News article about the challenge. E. Lockhart blogs about the challenge and Q&A with E. Lockhart at The BookKids Blog.

On to the review!


The Boyfriend List by E. Lockhart.
Delacorte // Paperback // 256 pages.
Reviewed from purchased copy.

Ruby Oliver’s stuck on a shrink’s couch all because of a few panic attacks. But when Doctor Z. asks her to write down a list of all the boys who she dated, liked, kissed, thought about, hung around with — no matter how official they are. As Ruby begins to think about the boys, readers get a glimpse into what led Ruby to Doctor Z.’s chair and what might have caused those pesky panic attacks. And as for the ceramic frogs, you’ll just have to read the book to figure those out.

This was a book that I bought, and then shelved in my room and lost until I found it again. I’m so sad that I didn’t read this book right away. Ruby is adorable and spunky. I was immediately concerned about her and had to keep reading to make sure that she was okay. Her outlook on the world is hysterical, but she does have her serious moments and situations.

The supporting characters in the book — particularly Ruby’s boyfriend stories — are incredibly detailed and rooted in reality. Readers really get a sense of what’s happening to Ruby through the stories.

One my favorite things about the book were the footnotes. I know that some people had issues with them (mostly adults), but I thought they really added to the story and set it apart from all the other chick lit books that are out there. Also, another librarian at my library listened to the book on audio and said that the footnotes were even better read aloud.

Small complaints — the chapters are a bit long, I wanted a break during some of them. And, Ruby doesn’t grow as much as I’d like her to within the course of the book. But, there are two sequels already (and a fourth book on the way), so Ruby might grow as the series progresses.

A definitely awesome edition to libraries; my teen girls love it.

SWAN catalog
E. Lockhart




1. alitareads - September 28, 2009

This sounds like a really fun series. And everyone mentions something about the footnotes! Those alone make me want to check out these books. Good review!

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