Erica Lorraine Scheidt
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Release Date: January 15, 2013
Anna remembers a time before boys, when she was little and everything made sense. When she and her mom were a family, just the two of them against the world. But now her mom is gone most of the time, chasing the next marriage, bringing home the next stepfather. Anna is left on her own—until she discovers that she can make boys her family. From Desmond to Joey, Todd to Sam, Anna learns that if you give boys what they want, you can get what you need. But the price is high—the other kids make fun of her; the girls call her a slut. Anna's new friend, Toy, seems to have found a way around the loneliness, but Toy has her own secrets that even Anna can't know.
Then comes Sam. When Anna actually meets a boy who is more than just useful, whose family eats dinner together, laughs, and tells stories, the truth about love becomes clear. And she finally learns how it feels to have something to lose—and something to offer. Real, shocking, uplifting, and stunningly lyrical, Uses for Boys by Erica Lorraine Scheidt is a story of breaking down and growing up.
So... I was really hoping to like this one. I really was. But, I was disappointed. I know that a lot of people did really like this novel, but my dislike comes down to one aspect: lack of connection.
Anna. On a certain level, I did like her, but I just could not connect with her at all. Part of that has to do with something else (which I'll talk about later) and part of that has to do with her decisions. Now, This novel was very honest and realistic, which I can appreciate, but it was just hard for me to put myself in Anna's shoes.
And the writing. Scheidt's writing was very, well, disconnected. I have seen this style before and sometimes it can really work. But not in this case. I had enough trouble understanding Anna and the disconnected feel of the novel did not help.
Overall, I just could not get into this novel. It did have good things about it that I could appreciate (the honesty of the novel), and I can see why others did like it. However, this just wasn't the novel for me.