The Boyfriend List by E. Lockhart

Posted March 18, 2017 by Ely in Reviews / 1 Comment

The Boyfriend List Book Cover The Boyfriend List
Ruby Oliver #1
E. Lockhart
YA Contemporary
Hot Key Books Australia
July 14th 2016
Sent by Publisher

5 Guys, 11 Shrink Appointments, 4 Ceramic Frogs and Me, Ruby Oliver

From E. Lockhart, author of the best-seller We Were Liars, and the highly-acclaimed The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks, comes this hilarious and heart-warming series.

Ruby Oliver is fifteen and has a shrink. But before you make up your mind about her, you should know that she has had a pretty awful (and eventful) past ten days. She has:
* lost her boyfriend
* lost her best friend (Kim)
* lost all her other friends (Nora, Cricket)
* did something suspicious with a boy
* did something advanced with a boy
* had an argument with a boy
* drank her first beer (someone handed it to her)
* got caught by her mom (ag!)
* had a panic attack (scary)
* lost a lacrosse game (she's the goalie)
* failed a math test (she'll make it up)
* hurt Meghan's feelings (even though they aren't really friends)
* became a social outcast (no one to sit with at lunch)
* and had graffiti written about her in the girls' bathroom (who knows what was in the boys'!?!).

But don't worry, Ruby lives to tell the tale. Through a special assignment to list all the boys she's ever had the slightest, little, any-kind-of-anything with, comes an unfortunate series of events that would be enough to send any girl in a panic.

E. Lockhart is that author that I was just destined to not like. I’ve read We Were Liars, Fly on the Wall and The Boyfriend List are all of them were really meh for me. It sucks because I know quite a few people who are big fans of hers, and I really wanted to like her but she’s just not for me.

I think the main reason is because I can’t stand her protagonists. To me, they feel very young and one-dimensional, and so I struggle to connect with them at all. I’d hope to love Ruby Oliver—I’d heard good things about the representation of anxiety in her series, but I just found her bland. Her anxiety felt real, but the rest of the story didn’t.

I was sent the entire series for review, which is the only reason I pushed through the first book. By the time I read the first chapter of the second book I knew I had to give up. Ruby was already driving me up the wall, and I didn’t care about any of the other characters enough to keep me reading. The idea of reading the remaining three books in the series made me feel like putting my head through a wall.

The female friendships in the book annoyed me too. I have an amazing little group in Michelle, Angel and Miranda and reading about how Ruby’s ‘friends’ treated her made me feel sick. I know firsthand that girls are cruel, but in a book that teenage girls would read, I just wanted one healthy friendship. Is that so much to ask for?

I always try to give authors second chances, but I honestly wish I’d given up on E. Lockhart before I’d even made it to the 100-page mark of We Were Liars. I’m sorry if you’re a fan of E. Lockhart, but I just never will be.

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One response to “The Boyfriend List by E. Lockhart

  1. Yeah, I read those books early on. Ruby helped me a bit with the anxiety. Other than that, the friendships sucked and the relationships sucked, too. That’s why I gave away my copies. I am sorry you had such a rough time with her. She can be irritating, I admit.