Bully

A review that isn't a review...

So I rarely do this …  bully

But then it is also rare for me to read a book and then squeal like fangirl…

Even rarer for me to read a book, squeal like a fan girl and then proceed to read it again…twice more!

In fact the only time I do this is when I have discovered a new comforter.

…Yes. I know… A bit mad. But I have used books like comforters from as soon as I could read. Where other kids had teddies or blankies I had ‘Phoebe and the Hot Water Bottles by Terry Furchgott, Linda Dawson or The Weirdstone of Brisingamen by Alan Garner or You're Thinking About Doughnuts: Michael Rosen.

phoebweirdstnedough 

To this day I keep a creaky, page worn paperback beside my bed, that keeps me sane during those difficult days. When I feel out of sorts it is my comfort book selection I turn to and Bully has just become the newest addition.

 

My interest in this book (and consequent over reaction to everything that happens in it) unnerved me a little and I managed to persuade my very good book friend to move it up her reading list just so that I could get a less biased view on it. To my absolute pleasure she reacted to it in much the same way as myself (although possibly not quite so insane or obsessive) and we spent quite a bit of time messaging each other with updates on the action (yes I read it again)!

 

So what is it about this story that gets me so… excited?

Um…Jared.

And maybe Jared.

Oh and possibly Jared … *shakes head and knocks some sense back in.

 

Do you know I actually believe this book is some kind of a ‘comforter holy grail’ for me. Somehow the author wrote a tale that tapped into my long term, deep-seated dreams and wishes. Dreams that I carried with me from childhood into tweens and then subsequently buried as an adult – which as we all know is when reality starts to bite you in the ass and lets you know – duh these things don’t really happen for people like you….

Well Penelope Douglas woke it all back up:

  •      The handsome boy next door – check. (mine lived downstairsin my dream he could fly from my window to his - but a tree works just as well.)
  •      The timid and quiet good girl that has so much more to her - check (yeah me in my teens…)
  •      The teasing, humiliation and bullying at high school – check (although at the hands of a select clique of girls and not a handsome sexy god-boy)
  •      The childhood friendship -turned attraction - turned issue – check (Not boy next door but we grew up together so I still count it)
  •      Best friend who betrays you for your bully/a guy- check (mind you I had to make that mistake twice when my BFF did both at separate times!)
  •      The slow drawn out sexually charged tension – check (Although unlike Jared and Tate I didn’t get quite so “happy” an ending)

With all these elements whipping up my memories and convincing me that sometimes these situations do actually workout – even if only in stories. I have to say it is no surprise that I adore this book.

What is a surprise is that my inner cynic; born out of all of the same experiences above. Didn’t start screaming at Tate! Half of me was reading along and shouting “Don’t fall for it!” “Keep your pride girl: don’t give him what he wants!” and then the evil side of me revelled in her mean payback comments.

I guess it is fair to say that, despite being a little disgusted that my ‘never-say-die’ soppy self won out over my inner bitter-bitch, this book really does cheer me up. Add to this that the author is a wonderful person who happily shares deleted scenes and is writing a Jared POV (sssqqqquuuuueeeeeaaaaaaalllll!!!) and you have one very happy although somewhat biased reviewer.

For the real review, and not my personal ravings, go to our reviews page or click here

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