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From E. Lockhart, author of the highly acclaimed, New York Times bestseller We Were Liars, which John Green called "utterly unforgettable," comes The Boyfriend List, the first book in the uproarious and heartwarming Ruby Oliver novels.

Ruby Oliver is 15 and has a shrink. She knows it’s unusual, but give her a break—she’s had a rough 10 days. In the past 10 days she:
lost her boyfriend (#13 on the list),

lost her best friend (Kim),

lost all her other friends (Nora, Cricket),

did something suspicious with a boy (#10),

did something advanced with a boy (#15),

had an argument with a boy (#14),

drank her first beer (someone handed it to her),

got caught by her mom (ag!),

had a panic attack (scary),

lost a lacrosse game (she’s the goalie),

failed a math test (she’ll make it up),

hurt Meghan’s feelings (even though they aren’t really friends),

became a social outcast (no one to sit with at lunch)

and had graffiti written about her in the girls’ bathroom (who knows what was in the boys’!?!).


But don’t worry—Ruby lives to tell the tale. And make more lists.


From the Hardcover edition.
Published: Random House Kids an imprint of Random House Publishing Group on Jan 16, 2005
ISBN: 9780307514790
List price: $8.99
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Hovering at a 3.5, but I'm gonna save room for the sequels. It's awesome the way E. Lockhart takes her stories so seriously, and that's where the real core of it is here -- true it's a book about boyfriends, but specifically, boyfriends that give you panic attacks. Not every girl has boyfriends and panic attacks, but the feelings are not unique to the context.I like reading books about younger teenagers lately, because I think stories and conclusions about friendship are particularly influential at that period. There are lots of ways to slice it, and Ruby Oliver's recent life in this book is a pretty powerful everygirl disaster. I am so excited she is learning and talking.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
This book was pretty cute. It's the story of a teenaged girl named Ruby Oliver, who gets herself in boy trouble at school. When a boyfriend breaks up with her, and starts dating her best friend, she makes the cardinal mistake of accepting a "pity" date from him even though she still has feelings for him. It turns out badly, and she starts seeing a shrink who asks her to make a list of all the boys in her life. We get to know a little bit about Ruby Oliver from her commentary on this list. At times funny, at times poignant, there's a little something in here for everyone who was ever a teenaged girl or "crushed on" one.I think the narrator did a great job capturing Ruby's personality, and she used the perfect accent and tonality that just screamed teenager. I enjoyed listening to this book.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
gah, this book stressed me OUT. however, it did make me reevaluate some past relationships. yay?
oH WAIT! extra star for footnotes!!read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
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Reviews

Hovering at a 3.5, but I'm gonna save room for the sequels. It's awesome the way E. Lockhart takes her stories so seriously, and that's where the real core of it is here -- true it's a book about boyfriends, but specifically, boyfriends that give you panic attacks. Not every girl has boyfriends and panic attacks, but the feelings are not unique to the context.I like reading books about younger teenagers lately, because I think stories and conclusions about friendship are particularly influential at that period. There are lots of ways to slice it, and Ruby Oliver's recent life in this book is a pretty powerful everygirl disaster. I am so excited she is learning and talking.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
This book was pretty cute. It's the story of a teenaged girl named Ruby Oliver, who gets herself in boy trouble at school. When a boyfriend breaks up with her, and starts dating her best friend, she makes the cardinal mistake of accepting a "pity" date from him even though she still has feelings for him. It turns out badly, and she starts seeing a shrink who asks her to make a list of all the boys in her life. We get to know a little bit about Ruby Oliver from her commentary on this list. At times funny, at times poignant, there's a little something in here for everyone who was ever a teenaged girl or "crushed on" one.I think the narrator did a great job capturing Ruby's personality, and she used the perfect accent and tonality that just screamed teenager. I enjoyed listening to this book.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
gah, this book stressed me OUT. however, it did make me reevaluate some past relationships. yay?
oH WAIT! extra star for footnotes!!
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
OK. Admittedly, I read the first part last, but still, I am even more convinced of Lockhart's adeptness at remembering and conveying the angst of teenage girls. One of the attributes of her writing is that she goes beyond the nuts and bolts of the story to interject philosophies on life - some I agree with, some I don't, but her ideas are timely and steeped withing a bit of historical context. While the electronic gadgets will eventually (and quickly)date the novel, YA's will continue to find much to relate to within the anxeties of 15 year-old Ruby Oliver. Some sexual references and attitudes. Some indication of pro-pill attitude, Junior Library Guild selection.
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Ruby starts having panic attacks when her boyfriend breaks up with her and starts dating her former best friend, her parents send her to a shrink who has her go through every boyfriend she has ever had or thought about having. Ruby is a character that many high school girls can relate to and all her descriptions of her boyfriends have the reader seeing each character through Ruby's eyes. The plot flows from Ruby's present day experiences and back into the past that require the reader to pay attention so as not to get lost in the story and read the footnotes that keep the story interesting. The setting is a typical high school that most readers will be able to relate to. Overall I thought this was a fun read and would be good for a public library in the teen section.
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Summary: Ruby Oliver's had a rough few weeks. Her boyfriend, Jackson, dumped her out of the blue; she got into a huge fight with her best friend Kim, which has resulted in all of their other friends not speaking to her; everyone in their tiny Seattle high school thinks that Ruby's a slut - which is completely untrue; and she's started having panic attacks. Her parents send her right off to a shrink, which Ruby is so not psyched about - what kind of fifteen-year-old needs a shrink, anyways? Dr. Z's first assignment for Ruby is to make a list of all of the important boys in her life, so that they can start at the beginning and figure out how things got to be the way they are. Review: It seems like most of the YA novels I read, contemporary or otherwise, have a love story front and center, even if they're nominally not romances. So it was refreshing to read a book that didn't really have a love story - or, rather, had a lot of love stories, was made up of mostly love stories, but that focused on their aftermaths rather than their beginnings. Reading about someone else's therapy sessions doesn't sound like it should be particularly entertaining, and certainly not funny, but in Lockhart's hands, Ruby's telling of her own life (and love) story becomes the fodder for some cringe-worthy yet comic moments. Lockhart treats the subject of panic attacks, and therapy, and the people involved with a good deal of respect, and despite Ruby's early antagonism towards her shrink, without judging.I always love when YA novels get the feeling of high school right, and The Boyfriend List definitely does. I went to a school that was about as insular as Ruby's, and I recognized a lot of the friendship and boy drama and cliquishness and general highschoolish behavior. Where Ruby's friends have The Boy Book, and Ruby's got her Boyfriend List, we had the Kissing Web and the Dot List of Crushable Boys (one of our guy friends found out that he only had five dots out of a possible six, and spent months actively campaigning for that last dot.) We thankfully managed to keep the inter-friend squabbling over boys to a minimum, but I still recognized a lot of the dynamics in Ruby's social circle.I was pleasantly surprised by Ruby herself. For most of the book, she's the kind of character that normally pisses me off: completely passive, not doing anything to make things better, and then complain-y about how terrible things are in her life. But strangely enough, I didn't really mind it in Ruby's case, and eventually I couldn't help but cheer for her... perhaps because she's at least working to change her behavior. I also really liked her narrative voice, and the fact that there were footnotes was an excellent bonus. The ending was satisfying without being overly neat and wrapped up, and I appreciated that Lockhart doesn't allow her characters an easy-out; everything felt well-earned. Overall, while I didn't always find this book completely emotionally absorbing, it was definitely consistently entertaining, and well worth the read. 4 out of 5 stars.Recommendation: I'd recommend The Boyfriend List for fans of contemporary YA who are looking for a fun read that's a little more than a standard girl-meets-boy love story.
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