Books · Reviews

THE F*** IT LIST by Julie Halpern

51MSgTVLLBL._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg – The F— It List

Genre: Young Adult/Fiction

Plot: Alex and Becca have always been best friends. But when Becca does something nearly unforgivable at Alex’s dad’s funeral, Alex cuts ties with her and focuses on her grieving family.

Time passes, and Alex finally decides to forgive Becca. Then she’s hit with another shocker: Becca has cancer. It also turns out Becca has a bucket list, one she doesn’t know she’ll be able to finish now. That’s where Alex comes in, along with a mysterious and guarded boy who just may help Alex check a few items off her own bucket list.

Julie Halpern writes about illness, loss, love, and friendship with candor and compassion. Here is an unforgettable book about living fully, living authentically, and just . . . living.

Opinion: Since I have been eyeing this book at the bookstore for the past few weeks, I decided to say f*** it (pun intended) and buy it. I am not sure if my interest in bucket and f***et lists came in to play or the fact that I was just excited about the title, but I had really high hopes for this book. I really enjoyed it and read it a few hours right after I had purchased it, but I can honestly say…not really what I was expecting. Let me explain:

The f*** It List (I am never going to get tired of saying that) starts out with our main character Alex dropping a royally f***ed up bomb about how her best friend Becca decided to screw Alex’s boyfriend…at Alex’s dads funeral. Ouch. After Becca explains to Alex what had happened between her and Alex’s boyfriend, Alex tells Becca that she needs a break from their friendship. But after a summer of not speaking, Alex returns to school and learns that Becca had just been diagnosed with cancer. As Alex puts her grudges for her best friend aside, Becca enlists Alex’s help in completing her bucket list for her. As Becca fights for her life, Alex starts to complete Becca’s list and do things she wouldn’t normally do…as well as start to develop feelings for a boy.

The characters of Becca and Alex are FRESH, FEISTY, and downright STRANGE but in the best kind of way. For seniors in high school, these girls have a very interesting outlook on life. Becca has a more positive way of thinking about the future and the present in comparison to Alex who keeps herself guarded and is more realistic about the world. I think both girls work perfectly together, and I love how easily their friendship comes back together after not speaking to each other for several months. The bucket list, F*** It List, that Becca writes and gives to Alex to complete is…interesting. Becca explains that many of the items were written when she was younger, but most of them have to do with something sexual. Be warned ladies and gents, Becca is a FREAK. Not only is her f*** it list covered with sexual acts, but the girl is ALWAYS talking about something kinky and raunchy. Cover those virgin ears children, because this girl is sexually charged and HILARIOUS!!

As Alex is completing items off of Becca’s list, she starts to develop a…well…you know what I am honestly not sure what to call this “thing” she starts to have with the character of Leo. Their relationship starts out in the most bizarre way. Alex had been pinning after this guy for forever, and one day they end up smoking cigarettes on some grass, Leo kisses her, and then their strange overly sexual relationship starts. Maybe I’m weird, but was everyone in high school really this sexually driven?!? I was constantly finding myself scrunching up my face at this book, my scrunched up face turning into a confused smirk, and then my smirk moving my lips into saying “what in the f***”. Due to there being an abundance of this going on throughout the book, I found the writing style to be very different. I had a love and hate feeling towards the relationship between Alex and Leo, and I think it was because of how awkward the writing was. I didn’t feel a big connection to Leo at all, he was just kind of…there. I think a bit more could have gone into the character of Alex as well, especially since she is the main character. I loved her sarcasm and her quick remarks, but her feelings were all over the place for me. I still don’t quite feel like I connected with her completely.

Though this was more of a Mature YA book, I rather enjoyed it. I thought a lot of the items on the list were comical and cute, but I wish there would have been some more epic things that Alex had to do. I read this book in just a few hours, so it will definitely pull you in and get you hooked. The characters are witty and charming, and the overall story-line packs a great message to not waste time in your life. I recommend this to anyone who wants to read something new, as well as anyone who has ever thought about writing a bucket list. This is great inspiration to get yourself motivated and to do things you wouldn’t normally do.

3 Stars


One thought on “THE F*** IT LIST by Julie Halpern

  1. Great review!
    Maybe I’ll give this book a try. 🙂
    I just bought Cadaver Dog, since I liked your review and the synopsis. Hehe, I hope I’ll like it. =).


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