I’m glad you’re Dante’s girl, because I wouldn’t want you

Title: Dante’s Girl
Author: Courtney Cole
Publisher: Lakehouse Press
Publication Date: June 24, 2012
Pages: 356
Genre: Contemporary
Source: NetGalley
Rating: 1.8/5
Picture Perfect: accurate
Protagonist Pizzaz: wah wah waaaah
Va va va voice: cheese and fluff
Mph: 70

Picture Perfect: accurate
I guess the one positive thing I could say for this book is that the cover really does capture the spirit of the story. It captures the cheesiness and the superficiality of the romance. So there we go.

Protagonist Pizzaz: Wah wah waaaaah
Reece has got to be the most annoying, lackluster, superficial female protagonist I have ever read. All she thinks about is Dante. Sure, she mentions her awkward relationship with her father and all, but she pretty much spells it out and lays everything out there with no room for interpretation. I realize that relationship wasn’t the point of the story, but I at least would have found it more interesting.

I also just didn’t believe the progression of the relationship. I know the book was intended to be light-hearted, but everything just happened a bit too fast. I mean, right away you know that Reece and Dante are going to end up together no matter what happens (love is all that matters, right?) Reece is attracted to Dante immediately because of his looks. Something that really bothers me about romance in young adult lit is that often, the only thing that keeps a couple together is the physical attraction. I just don’t feel that is a good message to give to young girls (or boys, or others), because true love is about more than that. I know at some points Reece talks about how she and Dante have long talks, but their conversations don’t really seem that deep to me, and only go to aid Reece’s physical attraction to him.

I feel like this relationship and all of the trivial drama (Elena, the drunk party, the (SPOILER) assassination attempt, etc.) would have translated better as a film. I read the book because I felt obligated to do so as I was given the opportunity to read it for free by the generous publisher, but if I hadn’t felt that way I would probably have stopped after the first chapter. I didn’t care about any of the characters and found the majority of them flat and cliché. I think the most interesting thing about Reece was that she was supposed to be a boy, but that’s not enough to build a protagonist on.

Va va va voice: cheese and fluff
Cheese and fluff do not a good sandwich make. I found the jokes humorous at first, but then Courtney Cole kept using the same ones over and over again. Of course there were humorous moments that did not involve sweet baby monkeys, but I felt like even those were contrived and overly cheesy.

Mph: 70
At least the book moved fairly quickly. If there had been even one corny action-less moment, I would have plain given up. Again, the pace and type of action in the story would have been better suited to a film, but at least it helped me get through it.

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