(ARC) Review: DON'T CALL ME BABY by Gwendolyn Heasley

Don't Call Me Baby
by Gwendolyn Heasley
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary
Published April 22nd 2014 by Harper Teen
Format Acquired: ARC
Source: received from Publisher (Thanks, Sarah and Megan!)

All her life, Imogene has been known as the girl on THAT blog.
Imogene's mother has been writing an incredibly embarrassing, and incredibly popular, blog about her since before she was born. Hundreds of thousands of perfect strangers knew when Imogene had her first period. Imogene's crush saw her "before and after" orthodontia photos. But Imogene is fifteen now, and her mother is still blogging about her, in gruesome detail, against her will.
When a mandatory school project compels Imogene to start her own blog, Imogene is reluctant to expose even more of her life online...until she realizes that the project is the opportunity she's been waiting for to tell the truth about her life under the virtual microscope and to define herself for the first time.
Don't Call Me Baby is a sharply observed and irrepressibly charming story about mothers and daughters, best friends and first crushes, and the surface-level identities we show the world online and the truth you can see only in real life.

(Thanks to HarperCollins International for sending me an ARC of this book for review! You guys rock! Please take note that this in no way affects my review.)

Imogene's life has been exposed over the internet even before she was born. Nope, she's not a hollywood actress or what. But yes, she's a celebrity on her mother's famous blog, Mommylicious, which is all about parenting and her, Babylicious. She didn't mind being the subject of her mom's blog at first, but as she grew up, she realized that it's time to have her privacy and to let people know the real her; not the girl on that blog.

"All my life my mom has put words in my mouth and tried to make me into someone I'm not. But today, I've finally had enough."
My mom doesn't have a blog or any other social networking account (except Facebook) but I can say that it's quite irritating when someone posted something about me online without my consent. Especially if I look stupid on the photo, or if the statement about me is embarassing! And I can think of nothing but revenge and get back to that someone, just like what Imogene did when they were required to create their own blog for their English class. Well, she's not alone in this because her bestfriend, Sage is experiencing the same. She's called VeggieBaby, since her mom is a food blogger. A Vegan food blogger, VeggieMommy.

Imogene and Sage thought they could finally speak out what they wanted to tell their moms for a long time through their blogs. But they were wrong. It didn't do anything good, and things just got worse. Luckily for Imogene, she still have her Grandma Hope. I just love her words of wisdom! She's probably one of the coolest fictional grandmas ever.

"This isn't about golf today. This is about frustration. There are certain times when it's good to just come out here and hit the dickens out of some balls. It loosens up something in you."
It's a nice thing to have a blog. I had a personal blog before and treated it as my online diary. While it's indeed very exciting to come up with something to post online, to share photos of what a great weekend you had, to talk about your problems, you don't have to expose all of them to the public. We still need to keep somethings for ourselves only. Especially to parents out there, please understand that we, your kids, don't reallt approve everything your share about us online. We may be quiet, but there are times that deep inside, we're dying of shame. Hehe (My mom read this book before I did! And I don't know, but it's kinda awkward. LOL)

Don't Call Me Baby is a fun and light read about family and friendship. It talks about the things that may keep the distance between the parents and their kids, and involves how to make it up with your bestfriend when you had a misunderstanding. This book made me laugh, it made me laugh, and it also made me blush. ^^,

I recommend this to all mothers (even fathers!) and daughters out there who wants to improve their relationship to one another. To those who wants to prove theirselves to other people who they really are, not the person they see online, and to best friends who want to strengthen their friendship together.


Gwendolyn Heasley

Gwendolyn Heasley is a graduate of Davidson College and the University of Missouri-Columbia where she earned her master’s degree in journalism. When she was a little girl, she desperately wanted to be the next Ann M. Martin- the author of the beloved The Baby-Sitter’s Club series. She’s incredibly grateful that the recession rendered her unemployed and made her chase her nearly forgotten dream. Her third novel Don't Call Me Baby comes out in April and her digital e-novella The Art of Goodbye (the sequel to Where I Belong) comes out in March.

She loves hearing from readers. Please email her at gwendolyn.heasley@gmail.com 

She now lives in Florida with her husband and baby girl.

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