Review : Whip it (book and movie)

Whip it by Shauna Cross
Pages : 234
Genre : YA, Fiction
Stand Alone
My Rating :

From the back of the book :

Meet Bliss Cavendar, an indie-rock-loving misfit stuck in the tiny town of Bodeen, Texas. Her pageant-addicted mother expects her to compete for the coveted Miss Bluebonnet crown, but Bliss would rather feast on roaches than be subjected to such rhinestone tyranny.

Bliss’s escape? Roller derby. When she discovers a league in nearby Austin, Bliss embarks on an epic journey full of hilarious tattooed girls, delicious boys in bands and a few not-so-awesome realities even the most hard-core derby chick has to learn.

Since I saw the movie right after reading the book, it’s really hard for me to comment one without talking about the other – especially since, as mentioned before, I loved the movie and didn’t really get the book.

I really enjoyed the movie : it was fun, cute, and good entertainment. I love how the characters were portrayed and how they developed through the short time of the movie.

Surprisingly, the movie was quite true to the book – the characters, the visual, it was pretty much how I imagined it after reading Cross’s novel. Yet I still preferred the movie a lot more. I can see two reason why that was : first, the writing. The novel was a bit too “teen speak” for my taste with too much sarcastic humor. I like sarcasm to some extent, but at some point I would have wished Bliss could show more of another side of her personality.

The second reason is the sport itself. Reading about roller derby is certainly not as fun as watching it! I think Cross did her best describing the sport, but you can’t have the same punch from a series of words as you get from seeing it. The intensity was good on screen, but lacking in the book.

Whip it wasn’t a bad book : plenty of readers loved it, some even more than the movie. But for me, it was a lot inferior to the movie : while it could be appreciated by many watchers, I felt like the book was one of those YA books that are really aimed and written for younger readers. I guess it just wasn’t for me!

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7 responses to “Review : Whip it (book and movie)”

  1. bermudaonion says :

    If it’s loaded with teen speak, it’s probably not for me.

  2. Kay says :

    Yeah, “teen speak” is so not my thing. But I agree that it probably means it is actually aimed at teens. I used to love random pop references and MTV slang is my books back-in-the-day… Will give this one a miss, but may check out the movie.

  3. Juju says :

    Great review! I loved the movie but I couldn’t see my self reading the book.

  4. toothy says :

    i haven’t read or seen the movie, but i could see why the movie would be better in terms of sport. it would be similar to listening to the games being played on the radio rather than watching it on tv. there’s just something about watching it and seeing it happen that makes it so much better.

  5. kay says :

    Kathy : I don’t know that I would say “loaded”, but the narration is definitely more for teens!

    Kay : Me neither. Some YA books I can really relate too, but teen speak of a very teen-like narration make it more difficult for me to “get” the book. The movie was fun though!

    Juju : Thanks! Yes, the movie was really fun! 🙂

    Toothy : What a wonderful comparison! Yes, that’s exactly how it felt!

  6. Jennifer says :

    Well, I sadly have yet to read the book or see the movie. But I remember when the movie came out being interested in it. I might skip on the book and just watch the movie. It sounds like the movie cured some of what the book was missing or did a bad job portraying.

  7. heidenkind says :

    There are lots of books that benefit from actually seeing what’s going on or what the setting is–Angels & Demons, for example.

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