(Barbie Doll, #1)
By: Heidi Acosta
Published: Nov. 1, 2012
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The only thing that 17 year old Barbie Starr wants to do is graduate high school so she and her little brother, Everett, can get out of Alabama. She doesn’t care about the rumors that are spread around about her like wild fire. Rumors are nothing new to her. Sure, maybe she could change her reputation, but why bother. She is leaving Alabama as soon as she can. That is, if she can pass algebra and graduate.
The only thing Dylan Knight would like to do is go through high school unnoticed; he has had enough of the drama that is high school. He took the whole of last summer to bulk-up: finally he is not being called names or being shoved into lockers. He wants to remain on the outside of the circle of constant rumors that surround the so-called popular kids who get all the attention. He would not, however, mind if his long time crush Katie took notice of him.
But it is Barbie who notices Dylan and she offers him a deal he can’t pass up: if he helps her pass algebra, she’ll help him get the girl of his dreams. Dylan agrees, but, as it turns out, nothing is simple when it comes to Barbie. Somehow, she can’t help but draw attention to herself — and to him. Soon Dylan finds himself tossed into the whirlwind of rumors that seem to follow Barbie everywhere. Can he save his reputation and still get the girl of his dreams? Or will Barbie be the one to break through his carefully-built facade?
Barbie is a girl from the wrong side of the tracks. Her mom's an addict and it's ultimately up to Barbie to put food on the table and to care for her younger brother. When her grades start to slip, she strikes a deal with Dylan. She will get him the girl of his dreams (Katie) if he'll tutor her and help her pass her math class. They pretend to date to get Katie's attention but pretty soon the lines begin to blur.
I loved this story. I had been on the fence for a while about whether I'd read this or not. I'm glad I gave this a chance because I found myself instantly falling in love with the characters and their stories. They each start out with this preconception of who the other person is. Barbie is supposed to be this slut who does drugs and drinks all the time and Dylan is this nerd who has never kissed a girl before. As they hang out more, they start to learn that they not only were wrong about the other person but that they actually enjoy the others company.
I also really enjoyed the side characters in this story too. We have Dylan's best friend Third, and 3/4 of the way through the book Barbie becomes good friends with Roxie. They are both in the story a lot and over time, just like Barbie and Dylan, we learn that appearances can be deceiving. Looking back that seems to be the theme "looks can be deceiving" because not one character was exactly how they appeared at first introductions.
My one major complaint with this book is the lack of editing. There were so many errors in this book that it had me questioning if I had somehow ended up with an ARC version. Sometimes it distracted me from the story because I was trying to figure out what the author meant and other times I read right over it not even skipping a beat. I think that once this book gets a good editor scrub down it would be perfect. Due to this, I have retracted a star.
"I walk down the red and white halls of Central thinking about what Third said. How Dylan can only see black and while. I am every color but black or white. I am a kaleidoscope of colors merging into a disoriented picture." -Barbie
Heidi Acosta was born on Long Island, New York. Moving around a lot when she was younger, she has lived in New York, Arizona, New York (again), Washington, Georgia, and Florida, in that order. Each place offered her something special, but she will always consider New York her home.
Heidi started writing as soon as she could spell. When she was three, Heidi’s mother gave her a copy of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House in the Big Woods; thus beginning her lifelong love affair with literature.
Writing soon also became a form of therapy for Heidi, when she realized that no matter what was happening in her life, she could find emotional escape while writing. Some of her earliest stories featured her as a princess who explored new worlds with her horse Buttercup. If it sounds romantic, it wasn’t, there was no prince charming in those fairy lands (boys where yucky).
Heidi now resides in Florida with her husband, very active daughter, one hyper Chihuahua, two sweet cats, and one very fat moody cat.
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