Dear Life, You Suck
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Dear Life, You Suck

3.8 of 5 stars 3.80  ·  rating details  ·  571 ratings  ·  116 reviews
“The shrinkadinks think I have a screw loose. Ain’t playing with a full deck. Whacked-out wiring. Missing marbles.”

Irreverent, foulmouthed seventeen-year-old Cricket is the oldest ward in a Catholic boys’ home in Maine—and his life sucks. With prospects for the future that range from professional fighter to professional drug dealer, he seems doomed to a life of “criminal...more
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published March 26th 2013 by HMH Books for Young Readers
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Emily May

Do you ever find yourself reading a book and thinking that you would probably have enjoyed it a lot more if you hadn't already read something that does the same thing but much better? That's how I felt for the majority of Dear Life, You Suck. It's a teen "problem novel" that attempts to be funny whilst at the same time delivering an important tale about the life of someone in an unfortunate situation. While I enjoyed it for the most part, I still find myself wanting to point people towards T...more
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at:

Cricket Cherpin (seriously) has lived in an orphanage ran by nuns for the past 8 years. Now 8 months away from timing out of the system, he is contemplating his future. Cricket sees three options for himself: (1) move up from being an assistant to his drug-dealing best friend to being a full-fledged dealer himself; (2) take all of his mentor, “Caretaker’s”, training and start boxing for money; or (3) step off a cliff.

If you fall into...more
Christina Wilder
Jan 22, 2014 Christina Wilder marked it as dnf
I could barely get past the first page with the godawful slang and homophobic slurs. A glance at later pages showed that neither of those things improved, so I gave up on this one.
If the title isn't enough to convince you to pick this book up, then this might not be the book for you. But trust me: you're missing out on a real gem. Scott Blagden's debut novel DEAR LIFE, YOU SUCK is the story of Cricket, who is about to age out of the boys' home he lives in.

Cricket is an amazing narrator. His voice is absolutely absorbing, and plot relevant! He's definitely a teenager, and shoots himself in the foot sometimes. (I absolutely adored one scene where he realizes his actions cau...more
I didn't enjoy this book for 2 reasons: the lack of an original story line, and the writing style/voice of the main character.

I felt overall that this story has been told a million times: Boy that grew up on the wrong side of the tracks falls for the popular girl, has a heart of gold, but only knows how to use violent behavior. Boy finds out he's good at something and that there's more to life than what his rough upbringing has shown him. This book is basically a modern day retelling of The Out...more
Karen Rock
Scott Blagden’s breakout YA contemporary novel Dear Life, You Suck, will punch you in the gut as much as it tugs at your heart strings. Its wise-cracking protagonist, Cricket Cherpin, is a streetwise orphan who questions the life he’s been given: parents who cared more about drugs than him and a misunderstood, hard knocks life growing up in a Catholic orphanage in Maine.

His first step towards making sense of it all is an English assignment in which he’s asked to draft a letter to someone he’s h...more
There’s something to be said for reading a contemporary book that it seems hasn’t yet been widely reviewed by other book bloggers. I feel a bit like an explorer right now. Dear Life, You Suck is a debut novel by Scott Blagden. Set in Maine, Dear Life, You Suck follows Cricket Cherpin who has a depressing back story and a not-so bright future. When a new girl steps into Cricket’s life, he realizes that it does not have to ‘suck’, that in fact there might just be happiness in store for him despite...more
Nenia Campbell
You can read more reviews at my blog, The Armchair Librarian.

Dear Book, You Tried.

I was macking on You-Got-Netgalley, trolling for some bookalicious booty, and came across this eye-poppin' cover. Ain't got no space on my TBR list, but I don't give a shit 'cause I'm a bad-ass and use double-negatives and swears and bib-boppy-Bill-Cosby-made-up slang. So suck it.

The main man, Cricket, is a total Debbie-douchebag. Jimminy here, he doesn't have a conscience and he has a Robin Hood ass-kick the stro...more
Well Cricket manager to get a goofy grin on my face more than once :)
Sue Wargo
As the back of the book states, "Cricket Cherpin's life sucks." This is one of the most engaging books I've read in ages. I am a HS librarian and this was an ARC I got at a book show. I was blown away by how authentic, tragic, yet comedic that Cricket is through out the book. Cricket lives in a group home in the middle of rural Maine. His house mother is a nun with an attitude wrapped up in her religious habit. She seems hell bent on keeping Cricket and the younger children in her charge on the...more

Scott Blagden has created a snarky, cynical and irreverent voice with Cricket Cherpin. He has been living in an orphanage run by nuns for the greater part of his childhood and is now on the verge of turning 18. As his 18th birthday nears, Cricket must make some life decisions. Unfortunately, the only thing he is good at is using his fists. His past has left him full of guilt and a wall around his heart. It isn’t until an interest of a girl and a near fatal accident that Cricket finally realizes...more
Nicholas May
I read alot of books. I mean, ALOT of books. But it's rare that I want to start a book over the second I read the last word of the last page. Cricket Cherpin, he of the cursedly unfortunate name and infinite sarcasm, struck such a chord with me personally that I wish I could give more than 5 stars.

He is infinitely flawed. Damaged physically and emotionally. Yet, he stands up for what he believes in. He stands as protector for those that are too weak to do so themselves. He does it all while bein...more
Kelly Hager
I wanted so badly to love this book and I just couldn't do it.

I will admit that part of this problem is likely the fact that I am neither a teenager nor a boy, so instead of finding Cricket clever, I mostly just found him obnoxious.

But then he'd do something completely sweet and I would like him...but then he'd go out of his way to be an even bigger creep than before, so then I'd hate him again.

To be fair, I know a lot of it has to do with his backstory (two awful parents and a dead little brot...more
Sarcastic and funny.

"Sometimes I wish I could open my mouth and free the untamed swarm of thoughts buzzing around in my head." (page 93)
I loved Cricket's voice and his soft spot for the Little Ones. One of my students, who is not a big reader, spurred me to read this book because he really liked it. Now he comes back and wants another book like it and I'm coming up empty, though he took out Son of the Mob.

Cricket Chirpin has spent the last 8 years of his life in the Prison as he calls it, the Naskeag Home for Boys, an orphanage. How he wound up there with the Sisters of Mercy (I think) unfolds slowly as the book progresses. Cri...more
Reign Robles
I've read a lot of books-if you'd count the books from The Bible-and this is THE FIRST STORY THAT HAS MADE ME CRY. There's something about this book that hits my strings.

To be completely candid, I'm the kind of person who doesn't like to utter swears. Swears push a red button in me that I always try to keep under control, and Cricket did push that button in me. I hated his attitude, but I kept on reading. I just like hating a person then suddenly learning something about that person that makes...more
Twyla Meeus
Absolutely loved this book. Every bit of it. From the start, I loved Cricket and now that I have read his story, I will love him forever. So here's to you Cricket, another person that loves you.
An emotional rollercoaster. The humor, the sadness, the sadness with a cynical approach, the happy sadness, it's simply perfect.
Usually I can predict the ending of books but this one had some very nice curves that made me laugh, cry and cry and laugh together.
The last 50 pages had me crying so much... My...more
I think Cricket is one of my favorite characters of 2013. I either had a smile on my face or a lump in my throat. I loved the relationship between he and Mother Mary, and also his relationship with the Little Ones. The last two 'Dear Life' letters he wrote tugged at my heart. The ending was wonderful!
Ariella Ram
Such poor vocabulary that it was absolutely brilliant and hilarious. Maybe not so appropriate to all my friends out there on goodreads but the title grabbed me and the book just pulled me into this world. Definitely a book I couldn't put down.
I think that all teachers should read this book. It really helped remind me to keep my student's home lives and histories in mind, especially the difficult ones. Cricket, the protagonist, is an orphan and is about to turn 18. For his entire life, all he has known is violence, neglect, drug abuse, etc. When he was put into an orphanage, things changed greatly but he can't forget his past and it affects his decision making and his relationships still 8 years later. He doesn't have a mother or fath...more
Beth Kohr
When I picked up this book and read the first page I looked at it in astonishment because I absolutely thought it would be horrible, but as I read more pages I realized I could learn to like it. But I did not do so, I naturally liked it the more I read. The feel that he is the main character was very strong since he told the reader that his teacher said he was naturally a writer. At the end of the book I sat and contemplated what made me like it so much, and I believed I have figured it out. I b...more
loved it. loved it. loved it. After I read the last page I wanted to go back and read it again. sometimes you read young adult books and the young adult is narrating the story using words that no teenager uses. I think some authors need to put the thesaurus down and not try to impress readers with words that you have to look up to find the meaning. This kid is real!!!
cricket is portrayed perfectly through his impressive descriptive language he uses and how his character shows the deeper side of...more
Julia McCloud
This may be the most beautiful story I've ever read. I was a blubbering, snotty mess the last three chapters.
Where do books like this come from? Can anyone answer me that? Huh?
I purchased this book at a local public library solely based on the title of the book. It's intriguing, I mean, why not? On the plus side, I read it on vacation, so it took me about five days to read and it was interesting to say the least. I have mixed emotions, however. This story was a novel, but it just sounded so...real. I wonder where Mr. Blagden got his ideas for this story. Not that I'd ever wish it on anyone, but I think it might've been more enjoyable for me personally if it were based...more
Denise (TeenBookLook)
*** Content Analysis only ***

First Glance:

Cricket vents his hatred for God, Jesus Christ and Christians as he weighs his options upon graduating from his Catholic orphanage – professional fighter; drug dealer or suicide.

Double Take:
60 F-words
182 additional profanities (stronger than 'hell' & 'damn')
Underage drinking and drug use
Negative stereotyping of Christians
Verbal assault against Christianity and the Catholic Church

Another Look:
This book is a sacrilegious diatribe. It is an aggre

Christina Taylor
By age seventeen,Cricket Cherpinwho is not onlythe oldest charge in a Catholic boys' orphanage but alsoswiftly approaching adulthood is surly, jaded, and world-weary. Having flouted the legal age of accountabilityfor years, he has—time after time—thwarted even the merest thought of preparing for a future in which he would even remotely be considered a viable part of society. Believing that the few options available to him are solely comprised of a future as a professional boxer, drug dealer, or...more
Diane Ferbrache
Cricket Cherpin’s life sucks! He’s lived the last 8 years in a boys’ home that was a renovated prison in a small town in Maine. He is constantly in fights at school, in trouble with the nuns for his behavior and language, and when he turns 18 he will have nowhere to go unless he wants to continue collecting payments for the town drug dealer. When one of his teachers gives him another “bogus assignment” he writes a letter admitting that he wants to end it all.
Told in Cricket’s own unique, and o...more
Jenny Q
3.5 Stars. Cricket Cherpin (yes, that is his real name) has been living in the Naskeag Home for Boys for eight years, ever since social services took him away from the miserable existence he was living with his abusive, drug-addicted parents. But even though he lives with nuns and four dozen younger boys who look up to him, walking the straight and narrow doesn't come easily for Cricket. He's a smart kid, and achingly vulnerable inside, and the nuns and his principal have been more forgiving tha...more
All of my reviews (and those of some of other awesome chicks) can be found at:

Cricket is basically an orphan. His parents are druggies who are who knows where. Now living in a home run by nuns, Cricket is less than a year away from being eighteen. Adulthood just around the corner, he’s dealing with all of the usual teen dramas and the added pressures of the life he’s been dealt.

So I probably should have loved this book. Thing is this book just didn’t feel honest to...more
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Twitter: @sblagden
Facebook: Scott-Blagden-Author
Web site: (personalized signed copies of book can be purchased at web site)

Scott Blagden grew up in Foxborough, Massachusetts (Go Patriots!), the middle child of a five-child Brady Bunch fiasco. He moved to Cape Cod twenty years ago to be near the ocean.

Scott is mostly self-taught, his college career cut short by a practical joke...more
More about Scott Blagden...

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“Dear Life,
I want out.
See you on the flipside.

“God punishing people for being good. God loving some people more than others. God asking fathers to kill their kids as proof of their faith. God giving kings special powers so they can slaughter entire nations. God not jumping in when His own kid get murdered. That's some crazy shit If that's the God they want me to believe in, no thank you. Ship me off to Hell right now so I can toss back a cold one with the zillion other people God never tortured with His infinite kindness.” 3 likes
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