Title: Play Me
Author: Laura Ruby
Eddy knows how to play the game. Not only has he got a hit online TV show, but in the game of love Eddy knows all the tricks, and who will play with him. The girls who know he doesn’t make any promises. The girls who are cool with it. But as graduation looms, everything starts deviating from Eddy’s master script. Never in a million years did he expect to be facing off with unapproachable Lucinda Dulko. For once, he’s not in control—but to be with Lucinda, he’s willing to get swept up by the game. What happens to a player when the rules change? Laura Ruby, author of the highly acclaimed Good Girls, has crafted another beautifully written, utterly honest teen novel—this one showing love and heartbreak from a guy’s perspective.
In this day and age where MTV and YouTube are almost a common staple in a teenager’s lifestyle, I applaud Laura Ruby for coming up with a story that is very relevant and relatable for today’s youth. The drive and determination of Eddy and his friends reflects that of our generation’s.
Surprisingly, I like Eddy. When I read the teaser, I thought he’d be the typical good-for-nothing brooding type bad boy who met his match in the person of Lucinda. We both love movies. That’s the first thing I noticed that I have in common with him. But unlike him and his friends, I can’t reference a film on the spot, and that’s what makes Eddy an interesting character. At such an age, his knowledge about movies is so overwhelming it almost borders on the unbelievable. It’s as if he’s too smart for an 18 year old. But in the story, it kinda works.
Lucinda on the other hand is like any typical female lead for stories with a male protagonist, almost unreachable, almost perfect, and most sought-after. In short, I kinda hate her. No girl should be that lucky. I know, I’m just jealous.=) But seriously, Lucinda is described just like that, which eventually in the end, is justified.
The thing is, too much is happening almost all at once, which I guess is not at all unusual, given what a teenager does and goes through. But since the subplots aren’t drama-heavy, the story does not really lose its continuity.
- Lucinda and her tennis matches with Eddy provides the romantic plot that is Play Me’s focal point. And “tennis match” could mean more than just the game. They flirt up a storm, obviously there are sparks, and words fly back and forth between the two, and yet I, as a reader, still could not properly keep score of what’s really between these two.
- Eddy and his semi-dysfunctional family is an interesting aspect of the story. Imagine having a more than civil relationship with your dad and stepdad, as they mutually grieve the death of their marriages with your mother. Their family dynamic is weird and refreshing at the same time.
- Eddy and his friends and their quest for that coveted prize on MTV have me rooting for them to win. The concept of becoming instant celebrities through a project is, as far as I know, everyone’s secret fantasy.
I wouldn’t give away the ending so as not to spoil anything. Kai has the book on her to-read list, I don’t want to rob her the chance to love/hate Lucinda, too.=)
Though I won’t recommend my 13 year old niece to read this book, I give it Laura Ruby’s Play Me 4 out 5 stars.
Rating: ★★★★☆ : FANTASTIC! - This is a really nice book. I love it! <3