Monday, December 29, 2008

Kiss My Book by Jamie Michaels

This thing opens with Mrs. Something—some kickass English professor—asking sixteen-year-old Ruby for an autograph. You know, because *fans self absentmindedly* Ruby is also kickass: She got a book deal at fifteen and now, a year later, she’s got a young adult book hot from the presses.

Um, yeah. Later on she’s supposed to get busted for plagiarism, which is aggravating in and of itself, and I guess is what makes this sound a bit exciting. But...

I am on page 21 and it’s astounding how many issues I have with this.

Maybe it’s because I just finished a book where even the protagonist’s dog had a personality—thus an elevated expectancy level—but I’m not feeling these characters. I can’t really elaborate further than describing them as stereotypical. Even the mean girls at the school are described as “honey haired cheerleaders” or something, and this one swim team girl who’s conveyed as jealous of Ruby’s book deal is depicted as a trashy being, because naturally one’s history of sexual activity is relevant to their congeniality.

Then there’s the fact Ruby is having an internal conflict on what to write in Mrs. Something’s copy of her book, because people who pay twenty-five dollars for a hardcover want something personalized. Dude, the hardcover copy of Twilight is like $20 or something, and that’s the high standard for YA lit. $25 = adult fiction.

Speaking of which, her book’s storyline is so generic. It’s like, a girl acquires this guy’s attention with her brains and not her body. Such is the shit that sold in a major deal. A major deal! Above $499,00 against royalties! What?!? I just don’t see any publisher paying that much money on something that isn’t just a tad less yawn worthy.

And OMG, all these literary scene people are so show-stopping. She’s going to this gala book party or something and her agent’s gorgeous, her editor is gorgeous, the toilet seat’s gorgeous—everything is scintillating in its New York allure, all in a way that makes you wonder if this is a movie premiere instead of a book event. Everyone’s fit, young, effervescent, and just all-out fucking awesome; it’s a bit unnerving. I mean, Ruby has to lose weight after her book deal and then start dressing in labels. What the fuck?

For a published book about the publishing industry, it’s like taking a knife in the stomach. All this glamour and glitter and Gucci and—GAH—is migraine-ingraining.

All of this aside from the fact I have no interest in reading a fictional take on the Kaavya Viswanathan scandal.

So, yeah. I’m on page 21, so I can’t guarantee if this book would redeem itself later on, and if my interest in finding out could be measured in temperature, it’d be the North Pole, with Santa and all the reindeer and elves and other nonexistent notions.

I’m thinking...? Aw, just remembered, can’t grade this one. Didn’ t finish it after all.

21 comments:

Renay said...

I wish I could not finish books. I'm the person you see at car wrecks, craning her neck to check out the blood splatter. Even if the book is horrible I have to follow it through to the bitter, bloody, glass-in-the-wound, siren-screeching end.

It's an affliction. The sad part is I I love train wrecks. I search out bad books just to revel in the badness half the time. I'm a sick girl.

Meanwhile, let me get this straight. She writes a novel about a girl who gets a boy for all her smarts rather than how hot her ass looks in jeans and yet she falls prey to all the gorgeous people and things around her? It is more complicated than that, I'm sure, but from your description, it seems like it's full of lulz. I have to resist hunting it down to poke at it. >.>

robin_titan said...

wow I began reading this and thought "hmm the story line seems pretty good" then I kept reading and thought "that book must really suck"

That's too bad, it always sucks to be disappointed with books.

Anonymous said...

Snarkiest review ever!

Gabbi said...

it sucks all the way through.

Anonymous said...

I'm thinking, dearest Steph, you can grade whatever you want, seeing as how this is your own site and rules were made to be broken.

And, okay, this line of you post -- the toilet seat is gorgeous -- has me laughing out loud.

Unfortunately, I've read some books that did sell in "major deals" and they pretty much sound like the Main Character's book's plotline in a nutshell. I'm trying to get published myself in YA; I think I'll skip this book. Just reading the review has left me with the slight taste of vomit in my mouth.

(Though, one caveat: I almost never blame the author for things like the 25 dollar book mistake. Technically, those types of mistakes can easily be the result of an editor's list of revisions, things the author had to toss in at the last minute, under deadline, and the crushing pressure of MANY other revision notes -- and then the editor AND copyeditor failed to correct it.

Steve said...

Ouch! I'm glad I didn't write that bomb.

Can you leave movies early too? People are often astounded with my ability to do so.

Anonymous said...

Oops. That was "your" post, not "you" post.

Amee said...

Wow, I have to agree with the Anonymous. Where was the editor in this? Such glaring errors and inaccurate depictions surely should have been questioned.

I've never heard of this book or seen it in a bookstore. I guess this is why.

Brooke Reviews said...

lol I love the honesty! :D

jocelyn said...

Ewww. This sounds awful! I can't believe something so inaccurate about book publishing got published. And I was going to read this one, too. Maybe I still will; sometimes we disagree. But this just sounds terrible...

And I love that you are a fellow book-non-finisher.

Vanessa (whatvanessareads.wordpress.com) said...

This is the worst YA book I've ever read.
I only finished it because I didn't have anything else to read.

It was horrible.

Reader Rabbit said...

Sounds terrible.

And where the hell was the editor??

Casey said...

I made it farther than 21 pages but I didn't finish. The premise had so much promise but it just all seemed so fake and unrealistic and I really couldn't get into the characters but I thought it was just me. Guess not!

Adele said...

I actually read this whole book and felt horrible for spending money on this piece of trash. I wish I could have stopped reading it but there is only one book I couldn't finish...ever. I must have a strong stomach.

Accurate review. I can remember thinking the same things in an equally snarky manner.

Becky said...

Love it when you're snarky :)

Khy said...

Is it wrong that I kind of want to read this just to see how bad it is? xD

Laina said...

Ha ha, I kinda want to, too. 'Course, I'd probably end up throwing it across the room... but the library doesn't like it when you do that.

One that I barely made it through was Confessions of a Teen Nanny. Horrible book.

Erika Lynn said...

i realize I am in the minority but i actually enjoyed this book

Kristin said...

It sucks being an avid writer/reader. You can no longer enjoy those simple fantasies of becoming famous via youtube or your blog or whatever. All of a sudden, you know how the business works, and you know that it's going to be tough as hell. *head/desk* *waves goodbye to fantasy*

I watched Cheaper by the Dozen the other day and was getting really pissed at how quickly the mom's book sold. I was like, "What? A book deal? A book tour? In what, five months? Seriously?"

It's almost funny, but not, lol.

Anonymous said...

Yeah I kind of liked this book. I was a little annoyed by your comment and will definitely NOT be coming back to this website. I will also be telling my friends to stay away.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Anonymous and Erika Lynn. I kinda liked this book too. Each person is different, though.

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