Double Review: The DUFF & Lying Out Loud by Kody Keplinger

I originally hadn’t planned on reading The DUFF, having heard mixed things about it. But then I saw the movie trailer and couldn’t stop laughing, and I got sent a copy of Lying Out Loud, its companion, for review, so I jumped on the bandwagon! I’m glad I did because The DUFF was a blast to read!

The DUFF: Designated Ugly Fat Friend

Publisher: Poppy
Release Date: September 7th, 2010
Series: N/A
Pages: 320
Format: Paperback (Movie Tie-In)
Source: Gifted
Genre(s): Contemporary, Contemporary Romance
Synopsis from Goodreads:

Seventeen-year-old Bianca Piper may not be the prettiest girl in her high school, but she has a loyal group of friends, a biting wit, and a spot-on BS detector. She’s also way too smart to fall for the charms of man-slut and slimy school hottie Wesley Rush. But things aren’t so great at home and Bianca, desperate for a distraction, ends up kissing Wesley. Worse, she likes it. Eager for escape, Bianca throws herself into a closeted enemies-with-benefits relationship with him.Until it all goes horribly awry. It turns out Wesley isn’t such a bad listener, and his life is pretty screwed up, too. Suddenly Bianca realizes with absolute horror that she’s falling for the guy she thought she hated more than anyone.

my rambles

Well, this book was the bomb. I had never really took the time prior to the buzz of the movie to pick this book up off the shelf and read the description, and boy was I missing out! The DUFF is real, hilarious, and unexpected.

The main character, Bianca, was one of my favorite parts of the book (one of — we’ll get to Wesley later…). Being inside of her mind was about as funny as you could get. Her thoughts as well as her smart remarks make for a narrative that will keep you reading purely for the fun of it. Add Wesley to the mix and BAM everything gets even better. Their chemistry and relationship, especially Bianca’s thoughts about it, were adorable, and yet again hilarious. BANTER! Wesley is a total *selective words* on the outside but when you read on you’ll understand what makes him wonderful. His looks just add to thewonderful-ness…

I loved the overall story, too. Although mainly a lighter read, the book does touch on some more serious topics in a way that felt natural for a book set in a high school.

The one thing that I didn’t like was that it ended kind of abruptly in my opinion. I wanted more of Wesley and Bianca!!! But the ending was about as cute as cute can get, so it’s all okay.

So, overall, The DUFF was a pleasant surprise. I flew through the book, and couldn’t get enough of it! Another book boyfriend to add to the list…

Lying Out Loud

Publisher: Scholastic Press
Release Date: April 28th, 2015
Series: companion to The DUFF
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
Genre(s): Contemporary, Contemporary Romance
Synopsis from Goodreads:

Kody Keplinger returns to the world of The DUFF in this brand-new companion novel!

Sonny Ardmore is an excellent liar. She lies about her dad being in prison. She lies about her mom kicking her out. And she lies about sneaking into her best friend’s house every night because she has nowhere else to go.

Amy Rush might be the only person Sonny shares everything with — secrets, clothes, even a nemesis named Ryder Cross.

Ryder’s the new kid at Hamilton High and everything Sonny and Amy can’t stand — a prep-school snob. But Ryder has a weakness: Amy. So when Ryder emails Amy asking her out, the friends see it as a prank opportunity not to be missed.

But without meaning to, Sonny ends up talking to Ryder all night online. And to her horror, she realizes that she might actually like him. Only there’s one small catch: he thinks he’s been talking to Amy. So Sonny comes up with an elaborate scheme to help Ryder realize that she’s the girl he’s really wanted all along. Can Sonny lie her way to the truth, or will all her lies end up costing her both Ryder and Amy?

my rambles

Special thanks to Scholastic Press for providing me with an advance copy of the book for review!

Maybe it was because I had just read The DUFF immediately before reading Lying Out Loud, but to me, LOL didn’t live up to my expectations after reading The DUFF. Sure I still liked it, but while The DUFF had amazing characters, I found the ones in LOL to be a bit unexciting.

The story had the same cute and fun vibe, but there was just something missing for me. While I enjoyed the banter between Ryder and Sonny, I didn’t like Amy, which I was really disappointed about. I was hoping for another incredible Rush!

Speaking of the Rush family… Wesley fans will be happy to get more of him! (Quite a bit more than I expected, actually!) I really liked how Keplinger tied the two books together with revisiting a bunch of our favorite characters from The DUFF.

By the end of the book I was totally rooting for Sonny and Ryder, though! But the ending I had a bit of a dilemma with due to it being open-ended. I’m not one that likes stories with endless possibilities. But hey, maybe this means companion novel #3?!

All in all, Lying Out Loud had the same charm as The DUFF, but I don’t think any follow-ups will live up to the original characters and storyline from the world of Hamilton High. It’s still definitely worth the read if you’re looking for another funny and cute read, but not my favorite.


18 thoughts on “Double Review: The DUFF & Lying Out Loud by Kody Keplinger

  1. I agree, the DUFF was the bomb. I’ve put off reading it too because I thought the story was nothing new. I was actually glad I was wrong because it was amazing. It was adorable and I wouldn’t mind reading it again.
    Thank you for reviewing Lying Out Loud because if not for your review I wouldn’t have known about it. 😀

    Ella @ The Filipina Booknote

  2. I have to say that I’ve seen the DUFF on the shelves at my library for forever, and never been tempted to read it — but I might have to change that! Truly funny narrators aren’t that easy to come by, and Bianca sounds like a gem. Wesley actually sounds almost too good to be true… which probably makes him perfect book boyfriend material? Haha. Great review, I really wish I could start reading this right now! (Blasted midterms…)

  3. Oh I didn’t realise Lying Out Loud even EXISTED. omg! I need it! I loved The Duff…I read it like 3 years ago so I’m a bit hazy on details, but I did enjoy it. (I don’t really think the movie looks anything like the book, but I DON’T EVEN CARE because the movie does look amazing. xD) I read Midsummer’s Nightmare by Kody Keplinger also, and it failed my expectations after The Duff. 😦 I want to read Keplinger’s MG book though!
    Thanks for stopping by @ Paper Fury!

  4. I actually didn’t care for The Duff too much. It was just okay to me, but I can’t deny that it was pretty damn hilarious. I’ve been debating on whether or not I’m going to pick up LOL or not. Who am I kidding, I most likely will. I mean, it is CONTEMPORARY lol.

  5. I finished the DUFF yesterday and I really really loved it. Totally fell in love with B and Wes but am a little iffy about reading LOL now as I thought it would be more about his sister? But oh well. Are there any good Wes/B moments???

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