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Alluring Reads

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Please Ignore Vera Dietz

Please Ignore Vera Dietz - A. S. King You can read all of my reviews at Alluring Reads.I picked up Please Ignore Vera Dietz after I pulled it off the shelf at Chapters and saw the blurb from author Ellen Hopkins front and center on the cover. It reads “Brilliant. Funny. Really special.” Upon finishing I have to say that those words can’t even begin to do this novel justice. It is so full of heart, it is so full of heartbreaking realism and it is overflowing with amazing writing. I would sit down with this novel and before I knew it I had devoured 200 pages and it felt like nothing at all. We meet Vera Dietz who is an 18 year old high school student mourning the sudden loss of her best friend, Charlie. The book starts off as Vera is attending Charlie’s funeral and paying her condolences to his parents. It becomes quite clear right off the bat that there is a mystery surrounding his death and also a darkness surrounding his family. I came to love Vera, like creepy love. I don’t think I have connected to a character in my history of being a reader as I have to her. I felt her loss of Charlie, I felt her loss of her mother and I felt her inner struggle as she pushed herself to cope with it all. I loved that her inner (and outer) dialogue were dripping with dry sarcasm and I adored how smart she was. She struggled with so many things inside, and wasn’t afraid to question authority throughout. She didn’t let Charlie walk all over her and even though that led to her losing him twice it definitely added to her character.A lot had gone on in her past and the unique way in which the story was told was the perfect medium for revealing the present as well as the past. We are treated to chapters on the present from Vera as well as ones titled “History” that go through different ages and let us know what happened. We also have a few chapters that are a few words from her father, Ken Dietz, and even a few that are words from the dead kid, Charlie. This added a sense of completion to the novel and we were able to see situations from everyone’s perspective which led to an inner struggle in me on who I wanted to side with. I love the way this story was told, while the chapters are relatively short, it was awesome to get different perspectives.Of course there is some romance in the novel, and while that aspect did have a lot to do with shaping Vera, it never overtook the novel. We know that she loved Charlie, and we get to see the ups and downs of their relationship in the “History” chapters and we also see her budding romance with a guy from work, James. I’m happy that the romance didn’t overtake the plot and that it focused more so on Vera dealing with everything herself. She definitely made some decisions that I didn’t agree with but in the end that just made her more real, nobody makes all the right choices. Please Ignore Vera Dietz is a poignant story that deals with bullying, abuse, teenage pregnancy, love and first and foremost, loss. I absolutely loved every stunning word of this novel and I will be reading anything by author A.S. King that I can get my hands on. Read this novel people!!!