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Imaginary Enemy

3.81  ·  Rating Details ·  238 Ratings  ·  36 Reviews
Jane White goes by the pen name Gabriel when she writes letters to Bubba, her imaginary enemy. She’s been writing to Bubba (short for Beelzebub) since second grade, blaming him every time something in her life goes wrong. It’s never her fault! She doesn’t want to admit that her impetuous behavior and smart-mouthed comments often land her in trouble. And now that she’s a te ...more
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published March 11th 2008 by Delacorte Books for Young Readers (first published January 1st 2008)
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Community Reviews

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Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Sally Kruger aka "Readingjunky" for

Looking for a fun book? This one is for you. Many people grow up having had at least one imaginary friend. Jane White has an imaginary enemy.

It all started in second grade when Jane began writing to Bubba. Whenever life would throw her a curve ball to upset her or embarrass her, she would sit down and write Bubba a letter to complain. Bubba was always there to collect the blame or abuse Jane tossed in his direction. Imagine her sur
Goldie Marie
Jun 29, 2008 Goldie Marie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read the first half of this during my shift at work where I picked it up. I LOVED it. The concept of the whole book is fa nominally original and creative. You often read books where the character leaves ou chunks of the history and has flashbacks, not the case here you read and get all the info from the very beginning, which I loved! I couldn't get over Janes' personality, most authors make their characters into a bright, over-achieving, smart-ass character, but not Jane. She is slightly dim-w ...more
Nov 13, 2008 Monica rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2008, teen
Strange structure. Follows one girl from childhood to eleventh grade. I think its probably best for middle school students.

I think this could work for fans of Stargirl. Its got the same kind of light touch.
Jan 28, 2009 Nian rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009
You. MUST. Read. This. Book.

I’m serious. I’m so in love with this book that directly after finishing it, I picked it back up and started re-reading from the first page. (What can I say? I had a lot of time on my hands.) Even the beginning was good, which is hard to say for most books I read. It has an original take, and its structured like each chapter is for a certain age (from elementary to high school) which makes it so good.

Jane’s been writing to Bubba, her imaginary enemy, since elementar
Taylor rated it liked it
Feb 13, 2009
Erin Sterling
Jane writes a letter to an imaginary enemy Bubba every time something goes wrong in her life, usually because of her impetuous and smart-alecky behavior. She likes to act as if she doesn't care what people think of her, but she actually does care. Sometimes you're rooting for her, like when she raises a flag at school of a not favorable portrait of a boy who insulted her best friend, and sometimes you just want to give her a push because you know she's capable. There's a little bit of her in all ...more
Jun 22, 2009 Emily rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good story about the struggle through life through the eyes of a little girl, Jane. I really connected with the problems she faced and the love she found. Simple writing and story, but, sometimes, that's exactly what you need.
Natalie P
Sep 22, 2009 Natalie P rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: 12 to 15 year old girls
Shelves: ya
While some young adult fiction contains themes that can apply to older generations, this book is not one of them. I would say if you've graduated high school then you've probably moved beyond the age where anything you can learn from this book would be applicable. A mediocre read for youngsters.
Sep 22, 2009 Jerjonji rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult
Third book by a Delacorte first time writer of YA and while I found the story worth while- it is far from what I write about. Is that a good or bad sign? I don't know!
Nov 27, 2009 Rachel rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thought it was a worthwile book. Some parts I love and could not put the book down. But at times I hated it.
Kelly rated it liked it
Dec 24, 2009
I adored this book. It was amusing and unique. I'm an avid rereader, but I don't recommend this to be a second time read. Reading this again actually detracts from the original wonderment rather than adds to it. Still, this is a great book.
Jul 05, 2010 Megan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
For me this was more of a 2.5. There were funny moments and promising parts, but I'll admit that I was underwhelmed. Perhaps this was because the book was a lot different than I expected. For instance, I didn't anticipate such a heavy emphasis on her younger years. This might mean that this book was just not right for me rather than that there were flaws with the book itself.
Sandra McLeod
I loved the idea of the imaginary enemy--I thought this was quite an original concept. I also loved the quirky family next door with their passion for music, and I loved Jane's friend Emma. I think Jane's character could have been more fully developed, and some of the plotting seemed a bit contrived, but overall it was a fun read.
Koelbel TAB
Dec 27, 2010 Koelbel TAB rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: maddys-picks
I really really enjoyed this book. And I loved learning and growing up with all the characters including the narrator, Jane. The plot of the story is about a girl writing note to her imaginary enemy, who she blames all of her problems on. It is about coming of age and accepting responsibility and knowing when you did wrong. Jane and her crazy family reminds me much of mine and their eccentric neighbors sound fantastic! The story is very interesting and I love the unexpected turn when her imagina ...more
Feb 12, 2011 Lily rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was amazing! I read it in one day! I was home during Christmas vacation. Before I left for home, I checked this book (along with 4 others) from the school library. This one, by far, was the best! The other four I ended up not reading since this one was so addictive! I've just recently checked it out again so that i can read it once more. It was written wonderfully; it painted a picture in my mind. All of the questions were wrapped up at the end, and it was full of life-lessons. Not onl ...more
Mar 08, 2011 Charlotte rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I feel like the girl in this book. Always getting in trouble, and getting used to it lol. This book is great and super funny, I didn't think it was going to be that good, but I was wrongm, because it's one of my favorites :)
Imaginary Enemy was the kind of light story perfect for after you've read something dark and heavy. Although many elements of the story were pretty generic, the concept of an imaginary enemy was unique and interesting.

The main character, Jane, was smart-alecky and a bit of a troublemaker, but despite her flaws (or maybe because of them), she was such a lovable character. I loved how she was an admitting slacker and took being called "normal" as an insult (reminded me of quite a few people I know
Jun 26, 2011 eXtreme rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Young slackers and troublemakers aged 12+
A simple and light read sprinkled with salt. There are many moments when I cringe or shake my head at some of Jane's over-the-top decisions but there are also times when I want to give her high-fives. Though I do not like Jane much, I as a fellow slacker and occasional troublemaker can relate to her. In addition, Elliot and the DeMichaels were a joy to read about. Though Bubba's reply was long-awaited, I was satisfied with the outcome and the ending.
Aurorae rated it it was ok
Jul 10, 2011
Aug 20, 2011 Sadgurl_13 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
i love that she ends up with the boy next door :)sharp is sexy =)
Dolores Zendejas
May 30, 2012 Dolores Zendejas rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011-2012
I really enjoyed reading this book. It's funny. Jane is an interesting character. It is about Jane White, who has to be interesting and normal to counteract her boring name. She ends up learning about herself and about others.
Jessica B
Aug 22, 2014 Jessica B rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Main character was a brat, there was am elaborate and dumb prank that the reader's not in on which only causes confusion, the first half of the book was recaps and flashbacks, stiff writing, didn't highlight the interesting aspects of the book nearly enough. This book was a mess.
Amanda rated it it was amazing
May 10, 2013
Aug 19, 2014 Ayah rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book actually turned me off to reading entirely for about a year. And I'm a writer. To this day, it is the worst book I've ever read.
I loved the idea of this book. Most people think of having an imaginary friend, but I found that the main character, Jane, having an imaginary enemy was very interesting.

Although the book was a little predictable, it was still funny (especially with Jane's smart remarks, sassy attitude, and slacker mentality, which often got her into trouble).

It was a good short read, and I liked seeing how Jane grew up from 2nd to 11th grade expressing anger over her problems and concerns to the one it was easi
Andreea Cretu
Jun 16, 2016 Andreea Cretu rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: summer-y
It's like she was exposed to the perfect childhood: musical neighbors, awesome family, friends. When I read Imaginary Enemy, I wanted to trade places with Jane. I wanted to experience her life. I loved this book, really.
Apr 08, 2015 Basilia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book it too interesting to ignore. And I am so glad I picked this book up. And you will be too. :) T
Anna Ploeger
Nov 27, 2015 Anna Ploeger rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 03, 2016 Lauren rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you are in the mood for a story about a bratty adolescent/teenager, this is a cute one.
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“I made friends easily, probably because I was spontaneous and average, which didn't intimidate people. It's the quiet ones kids are unsure about.” 6 likes
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