Review: Hating Heidi Foster

Hating Heidi Foster by Jeffrey Blount
Genre: YA
ISBN: 9780985762704
Published: October 25th 2012 by Alluvion Press
Rating: DNF, 2
Amazon | Goodreads

Hating Heidi Foster is about a young 14-year-old girl named Mae whose father dies while saving her childhood friend, Heidi. I was expecting a sweet, powerful, poignant novel about forgiveness and sacrifice. Instead I got something else, and really, I'm not even sure what it was, because I quit halfway through. Here is why I didn't bother finishing it.

Jeffrey Blount, I'm sorry, but you're not a good writer. You had a great idea for a novel and it had a very high concept and so much potential but the execution was poor and full of run-on sentences and missing commas such as the sentence that I just wrote about you so that I could depict just how annoying it was to try to read your novel.

A note to all writers: unless you are especially skilled, don't write a novel in the voice or perspective of the opposite sex. It just doesn't turn out well.

Mae… oh Mae, what can I say about you. Within the first few pages, the only thing I knew about her was that there was something strange about her. After a few more pages, that feeling grew, until I realized what it was: She sounded like a seven-year-old. She's supposed to be fourteen in this novel, just entering her Freshman year of High School, but she has the voice of a child, and really doesn't even feel like a girl. She doesn't feel like a boy, but she doesn't feel like a girl either.

Not only was Mae's character strange, but it was also awful. Yes I realize her father died, but that was the only characterization that I had on her. I had even less of her mother. And Heidi? Forget it, I didn't know squat about her. I couldn't tell you what these characters looked like, sounded like, wore, where they lived, anything.

This book is barely over 100 pages. Within the first quarter, literally nothing happened. It was thoughts and reelections and conversations, but nothing happened. In a literary novel that was 700 pages and about fifteen characters and had political and religious stories running through it, I would expect that sort of thing. But not from a YA novel.

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