Saturday, 4 July 2009

It's Not You, It's Me by Kerry Cohen Hoffmann

From Amazon: Zoe loves Henry. Henry dumps Zoe. Zoe wants Henry back—at any cost. Zoe’s two best friends come up with a plan to help Zoe get what she thinks she wants. The plan: make Henry jealous. But the plan takes a surprising turn. . . . Spanning thirty-one days in the cycle of a breakup, Kerry Cohen Hoffmann’s humorous and poignant novel depicts a girl whose single-minded focus on her ex-boyfriend has pulled her far from the person she most needs to win back—herself.

I'll be honest here, I read this book thinking it would be really bad. I'd read quite a few negative reviews beforehand, and was fully prepared to dislike it. But I didn't! Sure, the main character, Zoe, is a little bit over the top in her attempts to get Henry back, but I think what you have to remember is that, when you're sixteen, nothing seems like too much -- especially not where the boy you love is concerned.

I thought the story and Zoe's actions were representative of a lot of first breakups, and the utter despair that follows that dreaded moment. Granted, most people wouldn't resort to climbing up their ex-boyfriend's tree, though I think similar, less obsessive attention-grabbing gestures can easily be found in day-to-day life. Zoe just handled it badly, and did the only thing she thought would work in getting Henry back.

I enjoyed Kerry Cohen Hoffman's easy, flowing style, and liked her interpretation of modern high school life. I also liked Zoe's short conversations with her mother -- parents really do know best, and I love mother/daughter relationships that impart wisdom and advice. The cover of It's Not You, It's Me is one of my favourites, and I think the simplicity suits the story well. Although this book isn't by any means amazing, I'm sure some YA readers would like it, though perhaps not all. One quote springs to mind when I think about describing this book, and it's one from Buffy's Willow: 'Love makes you do the wacky'. Too true, eh?

7 comments:

Charley said...

I liked this book, too. I didn't relate to all of the things Zoe did, but I could relate to her emotions.

Just Your Typical Book Blog said...

Great review! After all the things I've heard about this one, I really want to read how crazy Zoe is. Must get my hands on a copy sometime.

Amber

Thao said...

I'm sure my bestfriend will like this because she likes girls who are insane. Zoe seems insane and I think I may like her too. I love the cover really much though.

So Many Books, So Little Time said...

I really liked her first book so I might read this at some point. Great review!

Chicklish said...

I think I'd really like this. Thank you for the great review!

Em said...

Ohh, this sounds interesting. I'll have to check it out. :)

Kate said...

This definitely sounds interesting. I'm really interested to find out what Zoe does now! Great review.