Title: Uses For Boys
Author: Erica Lorraine Scheidt
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication date: January 15th, 2013
Don't judge a book by its cover... or synopsis. That was the lesson learnt in reading Uses For Boys. Are you expecting a short and cute contemporary? well I must warn you, this book is not for you. What started off as an innocent girl who never fit in anywhere, soon dramatically escalated into a girl jumping from one boy to another in a disturbing pace. Uses For Boys, in my opinion, is mislabeled. I do know some people who would appreciate the underlying point the author wanted to make through this book, I know I got it, but it was an uncomfortable experience, especially knowing that young teens might pick this up and read it.
The writing of this novel is different. It isn't really told from any POVs, first, second, or third, and there is barely any dialogue, which I usually find annoying, but I actually enjoyed here. The writing style of Scheidt is different and unique and I found myself immersed in it and flipping the pages at a fast rate.. then we get to the disturbing over explicit scenes. I do not know why these scenes were needed, what point they were trying to make, reinforce the plot? I honestly wished these scenes were omitted. Also, throughout most of the novel there is this very discomforting feeling towards Anna and her daddy issues. I was also enraged at her mother's behavior; maybe because I could never imagine my mother being anything but selfless towards her children, I couldn't stand her mother's lack of interest towards her only child.
Even with all of that, my confused feelings towards the book, I still wanted to continue reading it to find out what happens in the end. Anna does mature and grow up towards the end of the novel, salvage whatever was left of her daughter-mother relationship, and finally accept herself for who she is and become confident in her independence and her not needing a guy to define her. I give Scheidt points for keeping me interested through it all. I would recommend it to mature teens and ones who want to read something different.