Please Ignore Vera Dietz by A.S. King

Cover via Goodreads.

Cover via Goodreads.

Rating: 3/5 stars.

On the surface level, Please Ignore Vera Dietz is about the death of a girl’s best friend. But, because that would be too easy, it’s much deeper. Vera Dietz, the girl in question, has spent a solid portion of her life in love with Charlie Khan – the same boy she hung out with when she was a kid. Then high school happens, and their relationship takes a turn for the worse. Vera comes to hate Charlie; however, when Charlie dies in a devastating way, will she be willing to clear his name?

Please Ignore Vera Dietz isn’t an easy read. It contains the death of a best friend, a mother who abandons her daughter, alcoholic genes, bullies, etc. One of the several unique aspects of A.S. King’s novel is the contrast of those dark topics with the lighthearted and witty voice of Vera, the protagonist. I ascertained the struggle Vera went through, but it wasn’t all that clear or well-defined; it wasn’t “my best friend died, now I feel grief” but much more complex and intriguing.

King accomplished many tasks with this work. She utilized various first-person perspectives (one of them is a pagoda), carried the mystery throughout the story, and presented numerous touchy issues without taking on a trite tone. Despite my three-star rating, I would recommend this book to teens because it contains little thought grenades that make you step back and reevaluate your life experiences.

But for some reason I simply didn’t love this book. Reading through other reviews on Goodreads from more seasoned/analytical perspectives makes me think that yes, this was a fantastic novel. Yet there’s something – and perhaps this is an entirely personal conundrum – that prevents me from giving it the utmost praise. Maybe it’s because I found the plot lines and characters dry (even if they were superbly original) or I just felt an unexplainable lack of empathy overall. Either way, I would recommend this one. It just didn’t entirely resonate with me.

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10 Comments

Filed under 3 stars, Book Reviews, Books

10 responses to “Please Ignore Vera Dietz by A.S. King

  1. Livvy @Nerdy Book Reviews

    Fabulous review. I definitely have to agree that there seem to be books that impact on people more than others and this was obviously the case for you. I’m not sure if it’d be my type of book, but I’ll keep it in mind! :)

    • Yes, every reader brings his or her own experiences and perspectives to each book he or she reads. I’m glad I brought the book to your attention, and thank you for reading and commenting!

  2. Aashwini

    Reblogged this on In My Veiw.

  3. Okay, so I have a question I’ve got to ask before I can add this to my “To-Read” list. Is it well written? For me, no matter how original and complicated the plot and characters are in the story, if it’s not well written, I’ll hate the book.
    By the way, your book reviews are AWESOME!! I swear, almost no one else (myself included) can write a review that’s interesting to read in the first place and doesn’t give too much away.

    • Yes, it’s definitely well-written! It’s not full of beautiful, drawn-out descriptions full of imagery or amazing syntactical constructions that will make you foam at the mouth, but the writing develops the voice of the protagonist amazingly.

      Thank you for the compliment! I find my reviews rather plain, it’s great to know that at least one person likes reading them.

  4. Wonderful review Thomas! I must say, once again my views on a book are largely similar to yours! While I liked Please Ignore Vera Dietz, I also found it lacking a key element that would’ve propelled it from a 3 star to a 5!

    -Grace :)

    • Thank you Grace! Our views on books have been pretty similar lately, so I guess it just goes to show that great minds think alike. Thanks for reading and commenting!

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