Good Reads Summary
Dear Life, You Suck by Scott Blagden
“The shrinkadinks think I have a screw loose. Ain’t playing with a full deck. Whacked-out wiring. Missing marbles.”
foulmouthed seventeen-year-old Cricket is the oldest ward in a Catholic
boys’ home in Maine—and his life sucks. With prospects for the future
that range from professional fighter to professional drug dealer, he
seems doomed to a life of “criminal rapscallinity.” In fact, things look
so bleak that Cricket can’t help but wonder if his best option is one
final cliff dive into the great unknown. But then Wynona Bidaban steps
into his world, and Cricket slowly realizes that maybe, just maybe, life
doesn’t totally suck.
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Sooo, I feel like someone's been listening in on my internal dialogue because 'Dear Life, You Suck' has taken two of the last books I've read, culled what I disliked in them, and then smooshed some of the good bits together. And despite the possibility of things becoming preachy... this wasn't that at all.
Because this was gritty and sad but ends less sad and gritty. And sure, perhaps it's an almost too-easy ending given everything Cricket recalls but I like the balance of things in this one. How it's 'good then bad, happy then sad' ... but not really because it's clear the guy has no clue where he's going and that it's where he is that drives him (or so he claims.)
A lot like my Favorite Flawed Male Lead this year -that would be Sutter Keely, if any of you're curious - Cricket Chirper is funny, smarter than he gives himself credit but distant too. Now unlike Sutter, this kid's got his eyes wide open. It's with eyes wide open, that he makes observation after observation over how life indeed sucks. Plus, he makes sense while doing it.
More, I enjoyed the contrast of how funny is at the start (wise ass, really) to the more serious moments of him considering things. Or how he kind of/sort of fancies himself a protector (all these rules to live by of not starting things and standng up for another and yada yada) then other bits of him being less upstanding and him just being a kid, most obvious with the girl around. He isn't just one thing and there's truth to that.
If there's one thing I wish wasn't in this it's that standard YA love interest. I mean sure bumbling boy and uncontrollable reactions with her around were honest and refreshimg and funny, but actually unnecessary. Because the boy alone with the stories of his past, rules on his present, then uncertainties (read 'raging fear') over his future would have sufficed.
Much thanks, Net Galley!
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