Saturday, August 10, 2013

Skin by Donna Jo Napoli

Book: Skin by Donna Jo Napoli                                                                                    
Genre: YA Contemporary 
Stand Alone
Pages: 341
Acquired: Netgalley in exchange for an honest review
My Rating: ❤❤❤

Goodreads Synopsis:

My lips are white. Sixteen-year-old Sep stares into the bathroom mirror. It's not some weird lipstick (she never wears lipstick). Her lips are just white. In a panic, She digs up an old lipstick and smears it on her colorless lips. But soon, more and more white spots begin to bloom, spreading their chalky tendrils across her olive brown skin. Does she have a disease? Is she turning into some kind of freak? Sep is usually the one who knows all the answers. With a quicksilver mind and a supple body, she's happiest when she's delving into the mysteries of animal biology or giving herself over to sweet, hot moves in Jazz Dance Club. Unlike her best friend, Devin, she's never been in a rush to get a boyfriend. But as the white blotches spread, her dating days, like the endangered species she studies seem numbered. So when Joshua, a boy, she's always liked, makes a flirty advance, she wonders: why not grab pleasure while she can. Frank, funny, and full of passion, this is the empowering story of a strong gifted teen who, as her life spins out of control, desperately tries to prove to the world and herself that she is deeper than skin. 

My Thoughts:

Where to begin with this book......during the first 60% of this book I just knew I wouldn't give it more than two hearts. I mean, I really forced myself to push through it. I hate to DNF a book. I feel like I owe the book a chance, and how can I give it a fair chance if I don't finish it? So, I pushed through. I knew there was a chance that I wouldn't care for this book. I don't read a lot of contemporary, but I'm trying to expand to more genres and try new things. I'm more into deep, serious reads that really make me think. So, keeping that in mind, I'm going to try not to be too overly critical of this book.

The main character, Sep, wakes up her first day for school with completely white lips. That right there was the only thing I read in the first few chapters that sparked my interest. But all too quickly, my interest was gone. Sep found out what was wrong with her within the first few chapters. Was it something so horrible that I wanted to know what would possibly happen to Sep? No, not really!  There went all my curiosity for this book. *Poof*. Gone! 

Now it's not that there wasn't more to the story, there was, but I felt like I was reading about a thirteen-year-old instead of a sixteen-year-old. At random moments she gets thrown into a sixteen year-old type situations, but then she was right back to acting like a rambling thirteen-year-old. I was bored to tears honestly. She most often acted like a sixteen-year-old with Joshua. She grew up with this guy, and he just randomly decides he likes her. And I do mean randomly! There was no relationship building, no nothing. I don't like that. I hate when books happen like that. Joshua is an okay character. Some moments I like him, others I'm just impartial. She also has two best friends that are mentioned, randomly. They aren't really all that important. They are just there, I feel like, for the sake of being there. I don't really have much to say about them, except that Devin does have moments of being a good friend. Owen-well there isn't much to say about him because he just wasn't all that interesting. I do feel I need to mention Slinky. She's a cashier at the department store that Sep meets while buying lipstick and turns into a bit of a mentor. She's actually the only character in the book that I liked and wished I could have seen more of. 

But anyway, somewhere around chapter 29, Sep all of a sudden became an interesting character. I actually began to like her. I cared what happened to her. I cared how the book ended. Weird, right? I thought so. The ending of the book actually turned out pretty good. Bitter-sweet is a term my friend Samantha used. I would say that's very fitting. 

All in all, would I recommend this book? No. Not because it was the worst book ever or anything, I just would never recommend a book that it takes more than halfway through until you like it-IF you like it. But that's just me. Now if you are big on contemporary, you may love it. But like I said, I'm not, so it's not for me. If you have read it, leave me your opinion. It's always good for others to see what a more broad range of people think ;) 

Bye for now! 


  1. I'm shocked that the author was able to turn it around for you! Personally if a book doesn't grab and keep me within the first 30% I bail. I just don't have the attention span necessary to keep up I guess. Anywho, I told you on twitter that I was branching out too (yay to reader growth!) but after your review I can honestly say I won't be picking up Skin. Not just because I loathe contemporary but because I have a problem with characters who can't act their age!

    Great review Hun!
    -Octavia Read. Sleep. Repeat.

    1. I was honestly shocked too! So that's the only reason it got a 3 instead of a 2! I just have issues doing a DNF. Lol I might eventually, as my review list grows, but I've always had to see it through. OCD!! Lol
      Lol yes reader growth! I'm giving some other contemp that I hear is much better a chance, so we will see how that goes! I agree with you about the character not acting their age, it's the biggest turn off for me! Especially in YA. Thanks for the feedback :)


I would love to hear from you! I try to always comment back :)