By Nathan Lambert
“Dear life you suck” by Scott Blagden, is a classic example of an angry parent book; library books that incur the wrath of the angry parents. In case there is any confusion, I love those books more than any kind of book ever in the history of anything.
Meet the protagonist, Cricket Cherpin (yes that is his real name). He is an irreverent, dirty mouthed, teenager with a traumatic past and a chip on his shoulder, and to top it all off, he is a 17-year-old orphan.
Overall, his life sucks, and it sucks baaaaaad. Bad as in his parents were both evil as sin, he has nothing but the finest of jerks at school after him and he seems to have no real future. He’s seen as a bully even though, as he puts it, “I fight to protect the little ones.” I love that quote. Overall, he has a lot of issues. Dear life, you suck, indeed.
The story is awesome, and it fits well with the theme of “Growth,” because that is what Cricket does as a person.
However, sometimes growth can be messy. Cricket ,as previously stated, is very troubled by the future, and the only way he sees to help himself is to become a small time drug dealer with his friend named Bugs, and since that career path doesn’t really appeal to him, he has to find some other way through life. Or maybe out of it.
Then comes along Wynona Bidaban, and after he beats her boyfriend up for picking on one of the kids from the orphanage, she starts to see the “real” him, as corny as that may sound.
As far as characters go in this book, for the most part they are spectacularly done. The nuns at the orphanage aren’t your stereotypical nuns. They are full of personality and they want the best for Cricket. Although he doesn’t necessarily see that. All he sees is his hatred for God, and the up-tightness of the nuns. There are others that care for him, like his language arts teacher, Moxie. Moxie is one of the main characters that help him grow as a person. As far as Wynona goes, I don’t like her all that much. She just doesn’t make sense. Why date a guy that not only doesn’t understand you, but also does things that you detest? I mean her boyfriend before Cricket, Buster, is a one dimensional character with qualities that she outright hates. The only reason I can see is just for a needless conflict that shouldn’t have happened at all. I just don’t like how that doesn’t make any sense at all.
A lot of reviews I’ve read about this book seem to not like it when Cricket gets sacrilegious, and I disagree. His sacrilegious-ness is part of his character, and it sort of gets better later on. Character growth is important, and not to mention that his sacrilegious jokes are hilarious to me. So I find that highly entertaining.
I think that Cricket’s character development has some Christian themes, as ironic as that might seem. He sort of grows as a person and finds his place in the world. The christian themes come in on how all of that takes place.
Overall, this book isn’t politically correct or respectful in language, but it does teach a thing or two about growing up. I love this book, and I hope a lot of people read this one.