Book Review: The Break-Up Artist by Philip Siegel

Title:  The Break-Up Artist                            Break-up Artist
Author: Philip Siegel
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary

Some sixteen-year-olds babysit for extra cash. Some work at the Gap. Becca Williamson breaks up couples.

After watching her sister get left at the altar, Becca knows the true damage that comes when people utter the dreaded L-word. For just $100 via paypal, she can trick and manipulate any couple into smithereens. With relationship zombies overrunning her school, and treating single girls like second class citizens, business is unfortunately booming. Even her best friend Val has resorted to outright lies to snag a boyfriend.

One night, she receives a mysterious offer to break up the homecoming king and queen, the one zombie couple to rule them all: Steve and Huxley. They are a JFK and Jackie O in training, masters of sweeping faux-mantic gestures, but if Becca can split them up, then school will be safe again for singletons. To succeed, she’ll have to plan her most elaborate scheme to date and wiggle her way back into her former BFF Huxley’s life – not to mention start a few rumors, sabotage some cell phones, break into a car, and fend off the inappropriate feelings she’s having about Val’s new boyfriend. All while avoiding a past 96victim out to expose her true identity.

No one said being the Break-Up Artist was easy

Favorite Quote:

“She puts her hand over her heart and gives me a look of concern.  ‘Now, I know you have never been in love, been pursued or had a significant other in any way, shape or form.  Not even a kiss, unless you count rolling around on your bed with that poster of Leonardo DiCaprio.’ “

 My Rating: 

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 My Review:

What a clever concept, what a clever girl, what a clever author!  Mr. Siegel has captured the high school experience in all its glory, agony, misery, challenges, and various social strata.  Memories flooded me as I read, good and bad.  How does he know all this stuff?  But it was a perfect representation of teen-aged thinking and the twisted and troublesome quagmires they can get themselves into.   He has also done an excellent job of portraying the meltdown, stagnation, and dysfunction experienced by the older sister. The entire book was well plotted and wicked funny.  I didn’t expect to enjoy a YA book this much, much less a YA book written by a man… but his man has skills!  After writing most of this review, I found I was intrigued by the idea of a man writing a book about a nebbish teenaged girl. So, I went to Goodreads to do a bit of research on one Mr. Philip Siegel…hoping to find something else he had for me to read.  I didn’t find any other books listed.  Wow – is this his first novel?  I am even more impressed.

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