Please Ignore Vera Dietz was a book that really hit home. Alcoholism, drugs, abuse, absentee parents… I could go on. If I wasn’t crying for the characters, I was relating to them, and with this book, and A.S. King’s writing, it was like I was apart of the book. Like I was living in Vera’s world instead of my own, but I wasn’t, because our world’s are the same.
“Is it okay to hate a dead kid? Even if you loved him once? Even if he was my best friend? Is it okay to hate him for being dead?”
This book managed to bring everything, good and bad, that makes up our society. The tough subjects and the lighter ones blended together to create an unforgettable book that will stick with you long after you finish it. As Vera flashed back to her childhood, it was like a nostalgic ride through my own, slightly different childhood- different people, events, and meanings, but overall the same feelings.
Vera is a senior in high school, and all she’s ever wanted was to be ignored by the other students in her high school. However, she’s best friends with Charlie, and Charlie is not the type of person that goes over-looked.
“Isn’t it funny how we live inside the lies we believe?”
He’s eccentric, adorable, a little gross… and a bit of a jerk. He has a tough home life with father who beats his mother, and sometimes him, too. However, Charlie doesn’t want to end up like his father… and for the most part, he’s nothing like him, at least, not until he winds up with the wrong crowd. The trouble-makers, or as Vera calls them, the Detentionheads, are losers, who spend their time getting wasted or screwing things up, and they end up leading to Charlie’s downfall.
Vera was witty, sarcastic, and brave. She never had a dull moment, even when studying for her vocabulary test she still managed to entertain me and make me laugh. Ken, Vera’s dad, was equally likable and as he got to say his part in the story I grew to love his character even more, even though through Vera’s eyes he wasn’t always painted in positive colors.
“I’m sorry, but I don’t get it. If we’re supposed to ignore everything that’s wrong with our lives, then I can’t see how we’ll ever make things right.”
My thoughts and feelings for this book are all over the place, so to sum up, I am absolutely in love with this book. It was heartbreaking, funny, poignant, and so unbelievably honest. If you haven’t already, you should definitely read Please Ignore Vera Dietz. You will not regret it.
About A.S. King
Look for Amy’s work in anthologies DEAR BULLY, BREAK THESE RULES and LOSING IT. (And brace yourself for 2014’s novel, GLORY O’BRIEN’S HISTORY OF THE FUTURE.) Find more at www.as-king.com. (Goodreads)