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Thou Shalt Not Dump the Skater Dude and Other Commandments I Have Broken (2005)

by Rosemary Graham

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Showing 5 of 5
This book was actually pretty good as far as readability and likeability of the main character. The only problem I had was the fact that the story told had very little to do with the premise put forward in both the title and the blurb on the back cover.

Kelsey is forced to move across the country to Berkley, California, after her parents divorce. She spends a miserable and lonely 8th grade year in a posh private all-girls school, so when she catches the eye of super-hot, celebrity skateboarder dude C.J. Logan over the summer, she realizes how lucky she is. She begins freshman year at East Bay High as the girlfriend of the coolest guy on campus, the benefits of which include insta-popularity and the envy of every girl in school.

But life as C.J.'s girlfriend isn't all it's cracked up to be. Sure, he's cute, and their makeout sessions are hotter than hot. But C.J. doesn't seem to know that there is a world outside of the skatepark. When C.J. begins to take Kelsey for granted again and again, she comes to realize she's really nothing more than a glorified groupie with the formal title of "girlfriend". She breaks it off with C.J. and looks forward to moving on to better things.

As you might expect, a self-centered guy like C.J. doesn't take getting dumped so well. He uses the internet to spread all kinds of lies about Kelsey, and she begins her sophomore year as a social outcast once again. Somehow she has to reinvent herself as something other than C.J.'s girlfriend while facing the disapproval of her peers for breaking the number one commandment - thou shalt not dump the skater dude.

I liked Kelsey a lot. She had an amazing amount of confidence, and when she decided that life with C.J. was a lot more lonely and boring than fun, she didn't angst or waste time trying to find reasons to stick with him. She broke it off cleanly and honestly and moved on. Too, despite her miserable year at the all-girls private school, she wasn't a whiner or a complainer. She took her low social status in stride and tried to make the best of it.

And this book read easily and quickly and kept me turning pages. The writing was very good - the dialogue very natural and the pace quick.

My problem with this book - the reason it didn't earn 5 stars - is because the premise of the book was never truly explored. I expected for C.J. to unleash pure hell on Kelsey after she broke up with him. And while he did say some pretty nasty stuff about her on his blog, I never felt the full repercussions of how the damage to her reputation affected her life. Part of this is because we never got a full picture of what life with C.J. was like. Kelsey "tells" the readers how she was very popular and got to go to all of the parties and stuff, but the reader is never shown her life as the girlfriend of the BMOC. When she fell from grace, again we are "told" that she got dirty looks and people who used to gush all over her now ignored her. But her life didn't seem that horrible afterwards. She still had her best friend, Amy. Guys still talked to her. She didn't have to eat lunch alone or endure slurs yelled at her in the hallways. There simply wasn't much focus on either before or after, and I never saw that Kelsey was horribly treated all because she decided she didn't want to be with C.J. I never got a good picture of life was like for her before or after, so the whole "thou shalt not dump the skater dude" was somewhat misleading.

I would recommend this read to anyone for a fun, light story. Just don't be disappointed that the book doesn't quite live up to the premise it promises to explore. ( )
  lynnm | Jun 1, 2012 |
The book was great! It was about a girl who moved to California before 8th grade. She went to an all girls school and was the least popular. Then she went to a high school and was the girl friend of the greatest skater dude in high school.
Review by: ?

loved it................. not the best ending but really portrays how many teens feel
really portrays the way many teens feel!!!!!!!!!
Review by: Vanessa

It was awesome!!!!
Review by: ally

its a great book 4 teens, u should definetly read it!!!!!
Review by: s.t.

not bad, a little cheesy. the ending was confusing.
Review by: Jessica

It was one of the best books I've read. It really portrays how teens feel. Rosemary Graham wrote an awesome book! If you get the chance i would read this book! Also DOUBLE IDENTITY is an AWESOME book... *jessy ( )
  bplteen | Apr 27, 2012 |
Reviewed by Randstostipher "tallnlankyrn" Nguyen for TeensReadToo.com

Kelsey just can't believe that her mother would decide to up and leave Boston and take Kelsey and her brother along to Berkeley, California, just so she could follow her dreams of going to law school. Except that, for her mother, it seemed like the perfect chance after the divorce was final. Sure, Kelsey may look like a character on The O.C., but she sure doesn't feel right at home in California.

She just wished that her mother would have moved them after her middle school years and before her high school years. And Kelsey has good reason, since when she starts out as an 8th-grader at Susan B. Anthony, it's just way too hard to make friends. Especially when there are only twenty kids in her grade, that have known each other since forever, and have established their own cliques.

But then Kelsey's life begins to pick up some momentum when she starts going out with C.J. Logan, the popular skateboarder. Yet even this doesn't feel right to Kelsey, since when dating C.J., it's all about him, all the time. So Kelsey does what any normal girl would do when it just isn't working out - she breaks up with C.J. Unfortunately, this proves costly toward her reputation. And so now Kelsey has her sights on something much bigger: becoming a reporter for her school newspaper. Well, that and a different boy to crush on.

THOU SHALT NOT DUMP THE SKATER DUDE AND OTHER COMMANDMENTS I HAVE BROKEN is just full of tricks and flips that every teenager goes through. Rosemary Graham cooks up a hilarious novel that teaches us how to ignore all the drama and move on with your life by finding something else to do (getting in a little revenge along the way). Kelsey becomes a heroine to all and you just can't help but want the best for her. ( )
  GeniusJen | Oct 13, 2009 |
When Kelsey moves to California, she has a hard time fitting in - first at the private all girls middle school, and then at high school. But when she starts dating a local skateboarding hero, it looks like she's found her place - until she breaks up with him.
This is a funny look at high school society, with its cliques, gossip, and unwritten commandments. Kelsey's views on her family, and her peers are amusing, while her difficulty fitting in is easy to empathise with. I was entirely engaged in Kelsey's struggle to define herself by her own talents, not by a boyfriend's.
What I liked best about this book was the ending - showing the balance and strength of character that Kelsey let shine.
I'd give this to readers looking for fun teen romance. ( )
  francescadefreitas | Dec 15, 2008 |
After Kelsey's parents divorce, she and her mom move from Boston to Berkeley. At her new private school, she makes no friends, so she convinces her parents to let her go to the public high school the following year. Hooking up with professional skater C.J. Logan over the summer ensures that she will be lonely no more. Or does it? Kelsey wonders if being C.J. Logan's girlfriend is really enough for her. This is a great story about a girl discovering her own talents and dreams. ( )
  escondidolibrary | Jun 12, 2006 |
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For my father,
James F. Graham
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I know it's a cliche, and English teachers say we're not supposed to use them, but my life has pretty much been a roller-coaster ride for the last three years.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0670060178, Hardcover)

Tall, blonde, and pretty, Kelsey may look like a perfect California girl, but she doesn’t feel like one.That is, until she starts dating a popular skater dude named C. J. Logan. But after a while, the life of a skater girlfriend begins to wear on Kelsey, and she decides to go it alone. C. J. doesn’t take being dumped lightly, and he starts spreading rumors about Kelsey. Now Kelsey has to save her reputation and work on building her new identity—as a star reporter for the school’s prestigious newspaper.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:12:50 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Having endured the vicious rumors spread by her professional-skateboarder ex-boyfriend, high school sophomore Kelsey Wilcox tries to salvage her reputation while attempting to earn a place on her high school newspaper.

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