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OCD, the Dude, and Me Hardcover – March 21, 2013

4.3 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 9 Up-Readers will enjoy 17-year-old Danielle Levine's antics as she writes about her senior year in essays assigned by her English teacher. Ms. Harrison doesn't always appreciate the latitude Danielle takes with each assignment and is frank in her responses, making readers feel the curse of the red pen. Danielle goes to an alternative high school in California where she struggles with OCD, has no friends, has to attend social-skills class, and has to deal with her crush, Jacob, who sends her mixed signals throughout the book. The teen is surely down on herself and readers will wonder why. As the plot turns, this well-developed character eventually reveals what caused her to leave her old school. Readers will watch her grow and appreciate her insightfulness into a variety of situations and classmates. Reluctant readers will appreciate the style of writing, and novice writers will see how it is therapeutic for Danielle. Initially readers understand why no one likes her, but by the end of her transformation, her classmates see her differently, and teens will, too. It is apparent that Vaughn understands adolescents and what it is like to watch them develop as writers and work through a traumatic experience. With a touch of humor and sarcasm throughout, this one is sure to find an appreciative audience.-Karen Alexander, Lake Fenton High School, Linden, MIα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

Written as a series of high-school English essays, private journal entries, letters, and e-mails, Vaughn’s debut novel introduces senior Danielle Levine. The format works particularly well given that Danielle, a loner, finds it easiest to communicate through writing. She also has OCD, often rearranging her collection of snow globes for comfort, and she attends a special school, where she pines after Jacob. Danielle’s voice is fresh, funny, and insightful, and her self-aware comments feel spot-on: I felt myself move into myself, literally, as if I had been, for years, a cartoon drawn by a drunk, cross-eyed artist who couldn’t keep me in the lines. As senior year passes, Danielle steps out of her comfort zone to attend the class trip to England, falls in and out of love with unsuspecting Jacob, and most transformative of all, makes a friend, gay Daniel, becoming his fruit fly (a fag hag of sorts) as they bond over The Big Lebowski. By novel’s end, readers will have only the highest of hopes for Danielle’s future. Grades 7-11. --Ann Kelley
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Dial Books (March 21, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0803738439
  • ISBN-13: 978-0803738430
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 0.8 x 8.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #133,128 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This book is really good!!! I was at lebowskifest last night and was given a free copy and then got it signed by the author! This reads smart, funny, touching, and has a strong voiced main character. Rated for 14 and up, this is one that adults will love as well. Characters are varied and rich. Look this up it is getting good reviews by publishing people like publishers weekly and Kirkus---loving it!!!
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By TDR85 on March 29, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
I really enjoyed this novel. Using her own written words (via school essays, journal entries, travel reports, emails and snail mail) and other characters' responses the wonderful and awful teenage life of Danielle emerges. She is friendless as her senior year begins but she is no wallflower (as her affection for colorful hats will attest). Her school peers don't know what to make of her, though because she is in a school for smart students with learning disabilities, they generally don't make a big deal of it. As the year progresses good, bad and indifferent people emerge. All the supporting characters, family, students, teachers and others shine through in the story, none are stock. Though she is deeply sensitive she is also courageous and with the help (and occasional sting) of others she starts to deal with current and past traumas. I also thought the author created a real teenager, one who had to deal with these very serious issues, but did so as a teenager, though an 'evolving' one as I think Danielle would say.

This is a beautifully crafted novel and the structure is impeccable. What I liked most in the story was that it was about making friends which is probably far more important for the long term than romance at this age - though I doubt many teens would agree.

Go read it.
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Format: Hardcover
Once and a while I break out of my standard thrillers and popular reading to read something that just catches my eye. I've been surprised and pleased at some of the new Young Adult novels that have come out-yes, they are not meant for this grown-up demo, but grown-ups (if there really is such a thing...) can still enjoy some great writing and some of the witty books out there, OCD the Dude & Me being one of them. Lauren Roedy Vaughn has it down.....Danielle Levine has OCD, is overweight, with bright red hair and is forced to take a Social Skills class in her senior year of high school. I loved Danielle from the start. She lusts after the popular boy in class and cannot be bothered with the rah-rah spirit week type events that surround her. She is witty and outspoken and pours her soul into her journal entries and her essays for her English class. Somehow, unless you were prom queen and loved every moment of high school, or were completely high during those 4 years you can relate.....they were the best of times, they were the worst of times, they were high school.

The format is mostly in the form of Danielle's journal entries, her emails and letters and her essay assignments. From funny to enlightening to heartbreaking it is all there.

I found myself portioning out the book because it was short and I didn't want it to end. I hope Ms. Vaughn plans to write more books with characters like this, so full of life and so special in their imperfections.

If you are not an adult looking for some escapist reading, I would say this book would be for those 14 or so + (or possible 12 if your parent is a little lenient and you are a mature 12).
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Format: Hardcover
3.5 stars

This is a book that I really liked, I just didn't like the way it is written. The story is in the form of Danielle's "me-moir" a locked binder that she uses as her diary. Most of the story is made up of the essays she's required to write for her senior English class. They include the topic, Danielle's comments about her teacher's feedback and grade, the essay, and her teacher's feedback. There are also private essays that Danielle writes in response to different things and emails between Danielle and various people, like her aunt and her therapist.

I really loved Danielle's voice, but I really hated how choppy the story was with all these different formats combined. For much of the book there was also no real plot or issue to be solved. It's just about this kind of weird girl in high school. Eventually more things started happening, but I wouldn't say that I was ever dying to know what would happen next. I probably could have finished this in a few hours, but I just had no motivation to keep reading.

There were two other things that drove me crazy while I was reading. First, Danielle is supposed to be at an alternative school, but the way that she talks about other kids makes them seem, for lack of a better word, pretty "normal." I wanted to know why Danielle's classmates were at this alternative school. There's the cute football player that she has a crush on and the bitchy popular girls, but they seem just like kids at a regular high school. Second, Danielle constantly talks about how fat and ugly she is and then, in one of her aunt's emails, her aunt says Danielle is a size 8.
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