Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Erin Lange | Butter

A book that I first picked up on account of the cover, 'Butter' is a thought-provoking book covering modern problems such as obesity and cyber-bullying. These two problems seem often to go hand-in-hand and this book gives the reader a chance to be in the boots of that kid.

If you're looking for a lighthearted, feel-good read, this is not the one for you. With the occasional too detailed account of Butter's relationship with food and the sickening behavior of his classmates (Note: this book will show you how futile that word is), this is a hard-hitting and painfully truthful story. Although I don't think it was actually inspired by someone's awful experiences, I'm sure it's an accurate representation of the ever-growing problem of bullying.

Once you get past the cyber-bullying and obesity problems, our poor protagonist Butter then has a harder-than-most time in trying to date a girl who he likes. Having spoken to her online, he's too afraid to show her his face for fear of what would happen. I can't say too much about this without giving the game away, but at least by the end she can see through his large exterior and appreciate him for who he was.

Something I haven't mentioned yet but is really what the story is about is the fact that Butter will eat himself to death, live on the Internet. As I stood in the Young Adult section of Waterstones and read this, a feeling of shock and disgust washed over me and I was compelled to buy it. This feeling comes again as you find out that people are betting on what will kill him first or how long it'll take. My point is that by buying this, was I acting in the same way? If the idea of someone committing suicide using food and a webcam was so horrifying, why did I proceed to pay money to take it home and have more detail? While I sit here and comment on the callousness of these characters and how surely this couldn't be true, was I no better without even realising? I digress.

I highly recommend this as a (in my not-so-knowledgeable opinion) not too well known book. I really enjoyed it and if you find that classics are not for you and that you'd prefer to read about modern problems, this'd be a good one for you. Looking for a happier book? Maybe not, although the ending is happier than I'd have guessed when I started it. I rate this as a solid 4.5/5.

Click the title for a link to my YouTube review.

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