Monday, November 21, 2011

Review: The Loser's Guide to Life and Love: A Novel by A.E. Cannon

Publisher: HarperTeen
Goodreads Synopsis:

Ordinary, boring Ed works a loser summer job at Reel Life Movies, where he doesn't even have his own name tag. He's stuck with "Sergio." Ed's only consolations are his two best friends. Shelving DVDs isn't so mind-numbingly dull with Scout cracking jokes, and after hours Ed hangs out with the superbrain, Quark. Life starts to look up when the girl of his dreams saunters into Reel Life. Ed knows he doesn't stand a chance . . . but maybe, just maybe Sergio does. All he has to do is pretend to be a smoldering Brazilian stud for the rest of his life. Simple, right? But . . . Ed's new dream girl has her own secrets, Scout wants to be more than Ed's best friend, and his buddy Quark wants Scout for himself.
Star-crossed crushes make for hilarious misunderstandings as Ed guides his life toward disaster in this fresh, contemporary twist on Shakespeare's Midsummer Night's Dream.


The synopsis of this book makes it seem like it's all about Ed, but it's not. It's also in Scout's point of view, and has some little bits in Quark and Ellie's point of view. I really liked how it was done.
The book's about Ed, who wears a name tag that says Sergio at a movie store, and he works with Scout, his best friend. And his other best friend is Quark. And then Ellie comes to town for the summer, and she thinks his name is Sergio, and he thinks she's beautiful.
First, Ed. Ed is alright. He's a bit self-centered, and while very funny, patronizes Quark too much for my liking. And he's very oblivious to Scout throughout a bit of the book, but not too much. But he lies to Ellie, and that's not cool. But, like I said, he's funny, and he feels bad about it, and tries to fix things. He also wants to make movies, and he thinks up movie scenes several times throughout the book, and while not hilarious, they are entertaining.
Scout, who's name is actually Aurora Aurelia Arrington, is his best friend. She's a tomboy, and has always been one of the guys, but she's also a closet romantic. She likes 'screwball comedies', and she is embarrassed about reading Regency romance novels. And while wanting to hate Ellie, she can't. I actually liked her point of view a bit more than Ed's.
Ellie is staying with her aunt and her husband for the summer, to work with a voice coach, and to try and get over her ex-boyfriend, who cheated on her. We get letters in her point of view, letter that she sends to her mother and grandmother back home, and letters that she wants to send to the college boy who cheated on her. She's hurt, but she's still very sweet, to Ed and to Scout.
And, Quark. His name is actually Quentin Andrews O'Rourke, but is called Quark for short. He studies the moon, and the sky, and researches things, and is awkward and smart and tall. And when he decides he's fallen in love, he reads three romance novels for research. He's very quirky, and a bit adorable. And he's one of Ed's best friends, and they are close, but they still fight at times. (Boys are so weird.) And Ed especially gets on his nerves at times, which I understand, and Quark is even a little awesome at one point in the book about it.
Also, all of their families are cool, but we get the most time with Ed's. His little sister insults him almost every time she sees him, and his mom makes lots of jokes, all in good fun. Quark's dad seemed nice, as did Scout's mom, and Ellie's aunt and her husband. And the movie store that Ed and Scout work is pretty cool. They were awesome outfits, and work with T. Monroe, who is full of worry, and Ali, their boss.
I liked how the book is put together. There are chapters for Ed, and Scout, and lab entries for Quark, and e-mails/letters for Ellie, and it's also separated by days, from June 12th to the 22nd. And when in the chapters for Ed and Scout, it's a little like diary entries, because they are told as the characters are thinking over the events later, and there are points when they ask rhetorical questions, like to an audience. While the questions bothered me a little, I still liked it for the most part.
The book isn't very long, either, so it moves along at a steady pace. Meaning you don't have to wait till the end of the book for all of the action, although the ending is pretty satisfying. While the swoon wasn't amazingly high, that didn't bother me too much. And, besides the characters, the comedy aspect definitely kept me interested. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this book, and how much different it was than I thought it would be. I was expecting more of an average, boy comedy book, but it had more variety, and while some things were obvious, it was still really good.

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