Perfectly Dateless: A Universally Misunderstood Novel Paperback – Sep 2010
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From the Back Cover
The prom countdown has begun.
Daisy Crispin has 196 days to find the right date for the prom. There's only one problem--her parents won't let her date or even talk to a guy on the phone. Oh, and she's totally invisible at school, wears lame homemade clothes, and possesses no social skills. Okay, so maybe there's more than one problem.
Can she talk her parents into letting her go to the prom? Or will they succeed at their obvious attempts to completely ruin her life?
Perfectly Dateless is hilarious, shocking, and totally real. You'll fall in love with Daisy's sharp wit and resourcefulness as she navigates the world of boys, fashion, family, and friendship.
"Billerbeck hits a home run with this warm tale about Daisy Crispin's funny trials and tribulations as she lives with eccentric parents, prom stress, and a desire to just be a normal teen."--Jenny B. Jones, award-winning author of Just Between You and Me and A Charmed Life series
"With her brand of wit and insight, Billerbeck takes us into the life of Daisy Crispin as she aims for the perfect prom date. This story reminds us that even a geek can live out her Cinderella dreams."--Rachel Hauck, coauthor of The Sweet By and By
Kristin Billerbeck is the bestselling, award-winning author of several novels, including What a Girl Wants. She lives with her family in northern California.
About the Author
Kristin Billerbeck is the bestselling, award-winning author of several novels, including What a Girl Wants. A Christy Award finalist and two-time winner of the American Christian Fiction Writers Book of the Year, Billerbeck has appeared on The Today Show and has been featured in the New York Times. She lives with her family in northern California.
Top Customer Reviews
By Kristen Billerbeck
I absolutely loved the title page where under the statement was posted "A Universally Misunderstood Novel"!! What a way to catch a young person's attention. Super way to begin a book and coax a reluctant reader into wanting to see what this book has to offer.
The main character, Daisy, has 196 days to find the right date for her prom- BUT her major problem is-how can she succeed, when her parents won't let her date- won't even let her talk to a boy on the phone!!
You have empathy with this teenage girl who is purely invisible at school- all her clothes are lame and homemade by her mom. She is quiet, with poor social skills. The author makes it very easy to identify with her and feel her hurt and humiliation. Daisy has a Diary in which she keeps track of possible dates, how to get them, how many days to the prom.... The problem is- how can she succeed when facing so many challenges??
The author keeps you guessing throughtout the book-can she talk her parents to even allow her to attend this social event? You just have to love Daisy and the way she copes with her problems, eccentric parents included. The book is a hilarious yet warm story of a teen who just wants to be normal. Even a geek wants to live out a dream.
Does Daisy get to the prom? Does she have a date? Read the book to find out. You certainly won't be disappointed. It is an exellent read- for all ages!
"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications Inc. Available now at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group."
Daisy Crispin is not allowed to date until she's eighteen and had moved far away from her parents watchful eyes. Still, she has one dream for her senior year: attend prom with a date. T minus 196 days and counting. Daisy has a list of five possible candidates. But there is one other small problem. She is invisible, wears sad homemade clothing, and her only social skill is to spout random statistics. Not cool. Still she is determined and sets off to win the prize of having a date to senior prom.
This was a fun read. Daisy is a quirky character who tries really hard to do the right thing. And when she fails, she fails big time. I read this in one sitting because it was too much fun to watch Daisy bounce between boys, fashion, friends, parental stress, and her job. A fun read for teen girls.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
What started out as a potentially lighthearted, good message story, quickly derailed into some teenage drama that came out of nowhere. I kept checking to see if I had somehow skipped a page as the story seemed to jump all over the place in the end. And...not to sound shallow...but the fun bits of a make-over story (ie. the new clothes, the new haircut, etc.) these moments were completely skipped over. It would start off with Daisy about to start shopping, or at the salon, then the finished "improved" product was never even mentioned. After all Daisy's moaning about not having "store bought" clothes, I would have thought the author would at least spend a paragraph or two discussing what she buys once she goes to the mall and gets new clothes. I was disappointed in that.
Also, alot of the characters seemed completely unrealistic to me. For instance, Daisy's parents seemed a bit over the top. So sheltered and backwards in the way they choose to live, then we find out it's b/c Daisy's dad has medical issues? That doesn't even make sense to me. And then at the end they suddenly are totally different? And Chase is this nice guy who becomes popular in his Senior year, and then suddenly becomes some "scary guy who tried to date rape a girl"? Where did that come from?
Overall I found this book to be slightly missing something. Whether it was the way the story was set up and then played out or the way the characters were written, always changing their fundemental elements, and becoming something else, I'm not sure. I kept reading it to the end, mainly hoping it would get better, and instead it just ended up in some twilight zone scenerio where Daisy and Claire are being forced by their school principal to work at the prom. ??? #confused
This was not the book I was expecting it to be. It seemed like the messages to "deny the world and follow God and nobody's perfect" were too forced. Almost as though they were after-thoughts. Trying to make this book have some deep, moral message instead of just letting it be a nice, good, clean read. Disappointed. :/
Aimed at young adults, yet readable for anyone who ever passed through that age as well. I not only felt kinship with the main character/s, I found myself questioning how I might respond differently... or accordingly, and can only imagine the impact such a novel could have on young women still in the throws of it all (especially with some guidance and great discussion as they plod along through the intricately woven tale/s.
I will most certainly be recommending this to all the young ladies in my life or whom cross my path and allow such recommends.
A winner, indeed.
Side note -- I just have to say ... where can I order myself a Max?! ALSO -- she has a great "fairy godmother" of a boss, which after you read the explanation of him is kind of surprising.
Review By: From Me to You ... Book Reviews
(read more of this review and a teaser on my blog)
Daisy is presented as brilliant and geeky, with idiotic parents who keep her cloistered like a nun. The first 200 pages of the book include many references to her parents neurotic parenting skills and the resulting frustration felt by this teenager. She is the product of a Christian education, and the author presents the Christian school, parents, and students in a demeaning manner. In fact, if you're rich in this novel, you're the enemy! Specific communities in California are listed with prejudice and I almost fell over reading about Los Gatos, a city close to my home. It was a city where "everyone turns into Al Gore...with an unstated competition of who is greener. People stroll with their designer dogs and hang out in their yoga wear while sipping nonfat lattes." (page 239) I find these references inaccurate, offensive and not entertaining.
As a young adult novel, the book encourages girls pursuing boys, teen defiance, and disrespect for wealthy neighbors. Daisy's parents lie to one another as an acceptable Christian marriage, the teen daughter sneaks out of the house, and each page of the book is centered on deceit. Right to the end of the book, the teen daughter is presented as flawless and admirable for standing up for what she wants: everything her parents don't want. She is rewarded for her lying and defiance. There are a few moments in the story where the author draws the reader into a big scene, then the scene becomes confusing and the reader is backtracking to understand what just happened. The final prom scene, the focus of the book, is allocated just nine pages in the entire story, so if you're expecting prom memories and glamor, you will not find it here.
I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher Revell books.
On the other hand, the whole thing with her life being a wreck was pretty fun to read, and her desire to be noticed as she experienced typical teen issues closely resembled my recollection of high school. The Christian humor was classic and will definitely be universally misunderstood if read my non-Christian teens. But that was part of what made it funny. Loved the journal rants and the author's "voice," too. This author has a quit wit with her dialog and snappy comebacks.
The overall style of the book was so classic Billerbeck. That was one of the things I liked best about it. This comment probably seems out of balance since I mentioned above what I didn't like, but that wasn't my intent. I admire Kristin's accomplishments as an author and her writing in particular, so I don't want this review taken the wrong way. Perfectly Dateless was a quick read and had some great insight, which I've come to expect from Kristin's novels. I loved the mini-sleuthing that was part of the plot, and the whole deception with the boy that she had her eyes on. Would loved to have seen a continuing storyline with her boss, Gil. The reaction from her peers to her makeover at the salon was completely skimmed over, too. Sigh.
Regardless, I loved how things worked out in the end and how Daisy learned some important things in the process. Daisy had a pretty good moral compass despite her tendency toward rudeness. So here I was smiling and feeling all happy inside, then the book was finished right when something really cool just happened (if I mention it then it will be a spoiler.) I looked inside the novel and saw no mention of a sequel. Ack! It felt so NOT over, but yet it was. Even a few more chapters would've tickled me as pink as the gorgeous cover.
I would really love to see more of this story, but fear that this will be a one book wonder. Wah! Now that I'm done fussing, I will say again that this storyline was pretty good, though I'm thinking overall I like Kristin's style better as a straight chick lit author, rather than YA. You can be as snarky as you want with your adult friends and somehow that just comes off in a better light. That said, I'll be looking for more books from this author.