Monday, February 3, 2014

"Bully" By: Penelope Douglas Review


By: Penelope Douglas

My name is Tate. He doesn't call me that, though. He would never refer to me so informally, if he referred to me at all.

We're neighbors, and once, we were best friends. But then, one summer, he turned on me and has made it his mission to screw up my life at every opportunity. I've been humiliated, shut out, and gossiped about all through high school. His pranks and rumors got more sadistic as time wore on, and I made myself sick trying to hide from him. I worried about what was around every corner and behind every door.

So I left.

I spent a year studying abroad and bathed in the freedom of life without Jared. Now I'm back to finish up high school and get the hell out of here forever. I'm hoping that after a year of breathing room, he's moved on and forgotten all about me.

But even if he hasn't changed, I have. I'm not interested in avoiding him or turning the other cheek anymore. We're going to go head to head, because neither of us wants to back down

My Thoughts
    Tatum has been bullied for the last four years by her former best friend Jared. Having been next door neighbors for years, Tatum and Jared were inseparable for years. Suddenly though at the onset of puberty, Jared seemed to completely change. He hated Tate and nothing she could do would allow her to understand why he hated her so. Making her High School experience an absolute horror, Tate is in turns horrified to go to school and confused by Jared’s behavior.
     At the beginning of her senior year, Tate is resolved to not let Jared get to her anymore. She has spent a year away in France as a foreign exchange student, and with an increase in self confidence, she is determined that Senior Year will be the best ever.  Initially Jared doesn’t seem to have changed, but as Tatum stands up to him and refuses to back down, he begins to change his actions. Slowly as his attitude changes, Tate is able to finally understand the reasoning behind Jared’s utter change in attitude.
    I originally thought the book read as a YA during the beginning and seems to change to New Adult later. Super sexy though and frankly addictive, Douglas does a fairly decent job of writing two high school enemies to friends. Bullying is frankly discussed with both the bully and the victim being highlighted realistically. I was impressed with her frank assessment of how easily victims can become the bully themselves. The reasoning behind Jared’s “bullying” seemed a bit out there, but fits in fairly well with the rest of the story.
    All in all I was impressed with Penelope Douglas’ Bully. This was one of those have to read until 3am stories that I couldn’t put down. Tension was high and the action was fast paced, but the sexual chemistry without the actual act was pretty smokin’. I was excited to see Jared’s friends are going to have their own books and I will absolutely be checking them out. An interesting take on the New Adult genre that’s different than most that’s come before it, Penelope Douglas is an author to watch.

Fall Away Series
1. Bully
1.5 Until You
2. Rival (August 2014)
3. Native (2014)

Book Details
Publisher: Self Published
Date of Publication: June 17, 2013
# of Pages: 333
Location: Illinois
Source: Personal Purchase


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