The fact that the movie based on this novel just came out last week was one reason I read this book, but it was also after remembering that I had read an article about the novel’s author, Kody Keplinger, a few years back.

Bianca Piper is a high school senior with two best friends, Casey and Jessica. Although she considers herself less attractive than her friends, her outlook is thrown off track through an encounter with her high school’s popular jock and well-known womanizer, Wesley Rush, who calls her the DUFF (Designated Ugly Fat Friend) of her group. After being partnered together for a school project, the two develop a relationship of sorts while Bianca deals with past issues and problems at home.

At first, this book may sound like the cliche plot of two characters finding themselves and dealing with a lot of stuff, there’s a lot more to this story. I was pleasantly surprised and impressed with the pace and content, considering Keplinger first wrote the story when she was seventeen years old.

I appreciated Keplinger’s take on switching up stereotypes. Instead of one of the popular cheerleader types being the protagonists’ enemy, she is instead one of the protagonist’s close friends and confidante. I also liked how Bianca is sarcastic and cynical; it made her much more relatable. It could be because of the fact Keplinger was a teenager when she wrote this made Bianca more realistic.

I am going to put out a warning and say that there is some sexual and suggestive content, but it fits into the story. And yet another reason why I admire Keplinger’s risk of adding elements like that to the plot.

This book is definitely worth a read if you like a story that takes what would be the typical stereotypes and creates a refreshing new plotline.