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Ditched: A Love Story

Ditched: A Love Story

4.0 25
by Robin Mellom

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High school senior Justina Griffith was never the girl who dreamed of going to prom. Designer dresses and strappy heels? Not her thing. So she never expected her best friend, Ian Clark, to ask her. Ian, who always passed her the baseball bat, handle first. Ian, who knew exactly when she needed red licorice. Ian, who promised her the most amazing night at prom. And


High school senior Justina Griffith was never the girl who dreamed of going to prom. Designer dresses and strappy heels? Not her thing. So she never expected her best friend, Ian Clark, to ask her. Ian, who always passed her the baseball bat, handle first. Ian, who knew exactly when she needed red licorice. Ian, who promised her the most amazing night at prom. And then ditched her.

Editorial Reviews

High school senior Justina Griffith finds herself, at 6:15 the morning after the prom, lying in a ditch. She is bruised, scratched, filthy in her royal blue iridescent dress and ruined matching shoes, and in desperate need of a phone. Hobbling to a nearby gas station, Justina throws herself on the mercy of attendant Gilda. Reluctantly, Gilda takes pity on the penniless girl, feeds her candy bars, and at last becomes fascinated as Justina relates the troubles of prom night. Justina had a first date with her true love, Ian Clark, but was separated from him through a series of mishaps that included encounters with drunken, oversexed, and slightly criminal acquaintances and strangers. She blames Ian for ditching her, when, in fact, he searched desperately for her all night. Things are explained when Ian and several friends arrive at the gas station to discover and rescue Justina. A debut novel, Ditched moves frenetically through Justina's story, emphasizing her love for Ian as she navigates her quest among a confusing number of drug-crazed and sexually predatory fellow teens. The novel probably intends for exploits and descriptions to be amusing, but they are more accurately categorized as pathetic. Victim Justina, known as "Sweetness," could just as well have been called "Clueless." Despite a huge marketing plan, Ditched is unlikely to join the list of classic titles. Reviewer: ?????
VOYA - Sara Guan
Ditched: A Love Story is a wonderful book that takes an age-old plot, and cleverly gives it a spin. Justina Griffith, the main character, is a relateable figure, her reactions genuine, her little faults endearing and fun. Perhaps the best part of this book is the way each dawning realization comes over her and the reader. Although just a little predictable (it has a typical happy ending), the originality of the rest of the story makes up for it splendidly. The book was a very smooth read, and easily absorbing: this reviewer read the entire book in one sitting. Reviewer: Sara Guan, Teen Reviewer
Children's Literature - Jeannine Stickle
High school senior Justina Griffith was hoping to have a great night at prom with her date and best friend Ian, but instead she found herself alone in a ditch at dawn the next morning with a new Tinker Bell tattoo on her arm. When she stumbles into the nearby 7-11, she finds the quirky and opinionated customers and staff to be sympathetic listeners, and she pieces together the puzzle of the evening for herself as she recounts the story of how her "scumbag" date ditched her on her comically disastrous prom night, using the stains on her dress as reminders of the night's events. During the evening, she had planned to reveal her crush on Ian, but instead the two quickly become separated through a series of comical mishaps involving a broken zipper, a dog-swapping prank, a barely-functioning Cadillac, and two boys named Mike with dates named after their "essences." While Justina tells her story, the reader is able to figure out before she does that Ian also had romantic plans for their evening together, but that his plans went comically awry just as hers did. As with her lovably clueless predecessors, such as Helen Fielding's Bridget Jones, this further endears the reader to the character rather than turns them off to her, especially because they have no doubt that she will figure things out sooner or later so that the story can end happily. This book will be enjoyed by female readers who like romantic comedies with quirky disaster-prone heroines, such as Louise Rennison's "Confessions of Georgia Nicolson" series or Sue Limb's "Jess Jordan" series. It is recommended for purchase in both public and school libraries. Reviewer: Jeannine Stickle
School Library Journal
Gr 7–10—The morning after the prom, Justina Griffith is fuzzy about how she ended up in a ditch. Her dress is stained; she has bruises, what she hopes is a temporary Tinker Bell tattoo, and foggy recollections of tumbling from a Toyota Prius. After making her way to a nearby 7-Eleven, she tells her story to the store clerk and a group of sympathetic listeners. Using the stains to spark her memory of what happened, Justina eventually sees what she hadn't been able to the night before. Decked out in her mother's choice of a consignment-shop dress and matching shoes, Justina planned to kiss Ian Clark, her thoughtful, understanding, perfect best friend and let him know that she was ready to take things to another level. But miscommunications, misunderstandings, and bad timing all played a role in keeping the pair apart for most of the evening. The pacing is a little slow at the beginning, as Justina's rehashing of events introduces the people who played a part in her downfall. The story has amusing characters and elements, including a dilapidated Cadillac, a giant daisy ring, and a rash of dog swapping. As events of the evening are explained readers find themselves knowing what happened well before the protagonist—which might prove to be frustrating. However, they will be able to relate to the feelings of regret, insecurity, and bravado that propel Justine through her madcap prom night, out of a ditch, and into a circle of new and caring friends.—Karen Elliott, Grafton High School, WI
Kirkus Reviews
Zany comedy dominates this romp through the prom night from Hell. When Justina literally finds herself lying in a ditch beside the road at the end of prom night, she hobbles to a nearby convenience store to get help. There she tells her sad tale to the clerk and a sympathetic customer. Justina and prom date Ian have remained just friends, and each seems a safe prom date for the other. Justina yields to her mom's wishes and wears a thrift-shop dress with everything dyed blue to match. Mellon tells Justina's story using various stains on the dress as a framework for introducing increasingly crazy episodes. The emphasis stays on comedy as Justina's tale of the night progresses, such as how she missed the chicken Marsala dinner and eventually including an incident involving a three-legged Chihuahua. Throughout, Justina receives cynical advice about men from her convenience-store audience, but a thread of real romance lurks just below the surface. Has Ian really ditched Justina, or is he caught in a similar comedy of errors? In any comedy readers can trust that everything will come out all right in the end, and that it will be a fun ride getting there. The author displays a well-developed touch for the absurd. For readers with a funny bone that needs a tingle, this should hit the spot. (Comic romance. 12 & up)

Product Details

Disney Press
Publication date:
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File size:
2 MB
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Meet the Author

Robin Mellom (www.robinmellom.com) has taught grades five through eight and has a master's degree in education. Ditched: A Love Story is her first novel. Her new middle grade series, The Classroom, launches in June 2012. She lives with her husband and son on the Central Coast of California. Follow her on Twitter (@robinmellom).

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Ditched: A Love Story 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 23 reviews.
beckymmoe More than 1 year ago
I ended up really enjoying Ditched: A Love Story. It was fun, quirky, and had quite a few unique little touches that really added to the whole reading experience (plus, the ending was just fabulous, IMHO). The story of a prom night gone terribly, horribly, wrong, the book flip flops back and forth between the present--Justina explaining her tale of prom woe to a sympathetic 7-11 employee and a fellow customer--and the past, her whole prom night experience as it happened. The present chapters are titled with the names of the foods and beverages Justina consumes while telling her dire narrative, and the past chapters get their names from the stain and/or body blemish that Justina will receive during that part of the evening (and are accompanied by a photo of the offense on her dress or person--very cute touch). It truly is a story of the Worst. Prom. Ever. Poor Justina's night starts out in questionable fashion (her escort says they should go just "as friends"), turns ominous (her mother decides to relive her own prom experience through her daughter and talks Justine into dyeing her shoes to match and her date to bring a similarly dyed rose corsage), and then borders into horrific (food goes flying--all at Justina, there is an extreme wardrobe malfunction, other guys are accidentally kissed and danced with--and that's just the first few chapters). Even though Justina--and her audience--are in despair throughout much of the novel, it all comes together nicely at the end and all the unclear and apparently incriminating events are satisfactorily explained. Definitely the book to pick up when you're feeling that the world is out to get you--within a chapter or two, you'll be laughing out loud and ever so grateful that whatever is going on with you, it's not THAT bad. And then the ending will just make you smile.
BooksWithBite More than 1 year ago
This is such a cute story that left me laughing and smiling so much! I adored that characters and her story-telling of what happened that night. It 's so crazy and exciting that it totally leaves you smiling! This story starts off with a girl crazy in love, swirling into a turn of events that will have you laughing. One thing I enjoyed about this book is the main character Justina. After fighting her feelings about Ian, things have turn out not what she expected. I enjoyed reading about Justina and see her crazy roller coaster emotions. I remember being a teen and realize now that the things I thought were so important that if they didn't get fixed right away that I would die, were petty things. Justina has bouts of her emotions going everywhere. And like her, I did the same thing too. Always crying, whining over dumb things. It was good to see a teenage girl act the way I acted when I was young. The love interest in this story is nice. I like how both were scared after what was done to both of them and seeing them enjoy each other's company is a nice touch to the story. Seeing them around like chickens with no head and the crazy things they did is even funnier. I admit that some of the things done may seem overboard, but it did come together nicely at the end of the story. With that said, this book reminded me of the movie The Hangover. Dog swapping, late night burger stops, and plenty of drama, Justina night is filled with stories I'm sure the reader will never forget. Have a crazy dress you mom made you wear to prom? Well then, read this story. It will give you a prom night you will never forget.
chocolatechip3847 More than 1 year ago
Somehow Ditched proved to be one of those classic yet never the less completely unique and unconventional romances. Justina's character (much like her prom night) is absolutely one of kind. The relationship between her and Ian was completely heart-melting and I loved it none the less.Not to be outdone, Justina's prom night entourage which includes the Stoner Mikes and their two dates Serenity and Bliss also proved be fabulous as well!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved he book it is a good book for ages 11 and up. Spottedpath from windclan
DanceBree17 More than 1 year ago
This book is at times laugh out loud funny, and other times sweet and tender, just like a high school romance really. This is a look back on Justina and her train wreck prom night. We stumble(sometimes literally) through Justina's night and endure all the problems and spills and accidents through her re-telling of the story to a worker at the local 7 Eleven(the good one, not the sucky one across town). All along Justina is trying to get back together with her date Ian, but things just never work out, and of course there is Justina herself, trying to read more into things than really are there. But with the help of the stoner Brians and their dates, she finally gets back with Ian and she gets her happy ending. This is a cute, well written book and it makes Prom fun, even if yours was worse, or way better, its just a fun read and I highly recommend it.
Naj More than 1 year ago
At the beginning of the book, I found myself a little confused with how the transition of each chapter was like. Justina (our protagonist) is telling this 7-Eleven Clerk Gilda, about how she got ditched, starting from the very beginning of the night and even the very beginning of friendships and relationships. The transition was hard to get used to at first but when you do. The flow is amazing and the writing style just blows you away. Robin Mellom managed to write realistic events that happen to real teenagers. She also got how teenagers are now-a-days right! Some authors get their 16-year-old protagonist all wrong by constructing them to act and talk like 40-year-olds. Now, Justina was well written and so was all the other characters who each played a colorful part in Robin's book. I'm really amazed. Robin Mellom has such a unique writing style. The way she wrote Ditched was beyond creative. By the middle of the book, I realized that the book was written almost like a John Hughes movie and I love John Hughes and all his movies. This book is like a combination of the Pretty in Pink and Sixteen Candles with its own originality. By the end of the book and coincidentally the author thanked John Hughes for shaping her formative years. My guess was right! Ditched: A Love Story is an amazing fluffy young adult contemporary romance. It had its exciting bits, its crazy bits, its funny bits and most of all it had romance. If Robin Mollem wrote and made movies. She would be the next John Hughes. This is a guaranteed unputdownable book that's a perfect read for the young adult romance enthusiast.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Justina is just your average not so average teenage girl, exited to go to prom with her crush, then it goes sour and dirty. Ditched by Robin Mellon. I liked how real it could've been because at the beginning it was real. I didn't like the ending because it seemed like a fairy tale. I would recommend this book to 16-year old that like fantasies.  
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Claws in the dirt. "Yeah...well, you made the right decisions. Probably." She lept into a tree. (I will probably be on a bit less than when i used to, cuz my ma took my nook back and i switched it out for mine ((the shop broke on mine)) so yeah. Ramen noodles taste good.)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Bad problem for her....
Books4Tomorrow More than 1 year ago
Oh my gosh, it’s been a long time since I’ve read a romance where I couldn’t wait for the two main characters to just fall in love and get on with it. Justina and Ian are definitely going to be added to my “Top Ten Book Couples of 2013” list. This has been an incredibly fun book to read, and I love the way in which it was written and how the story unfolds through each stain on Justina’s prom dress and every bruise and injury on her body.  First of all I really love the cover. It’s colorful and eye-catching, but mostly it shows the dress which forms a fundamental part of the story, in its exact style and color. Justina feels like a blueberry and Oompa Loompa in this dress with its matching blue corsage and blue dyed shoes, and looking at the cover I’m bound to agree with her. Justina is such a lovely character, but her self-doubt and assumptions were slightly bothersome from time to time. Nevertheless, by the middle of the book it made complete sense why she is the way she is and I have to hand it to this girl: she endured each blow with dignity. If I was ridiculed by two of the most popular girls, the zip of my prom dress ripped off, been bitten by a three-legged Chihuahua named Chomper, and unwillingly been kissed by Dan-O the Man-O whose dad accidentally spilled a bowl of soy sauce on my dress, I would’ve cracked like an egg in no time. Ian was undoubtedly my favorite character. He is all-out boyfriend material, and because I liked Justina and fell in love with Ian, I was rooting for this friends-to-lovers couple all the way. They just couldn’t seem to be in the same spot at the same time, and their prom night ended being an incredibly hilarious, but also sentimental journey not only for Justina, Ian, Donna (the self-proclaimed cougar), Gilda (the shop assistant at the 7-Eleven), the two stoner Mikes with their girlfriends Serenity and Bliss, but also for the reader who gets tagged along on Justina’s numerous quests in finding Ian, who disappeared without an explanation. Ditched is a quirky, feel-good romantic comedy which, while reading it, can make you believe that there is such a thing as “the perfect love”. It had such a cheesy, clichéd, typically romcom-movie ending, but it was perfect. I wouldn’t have written it differently. I’m not a fan of romance books, so the mere fact that I enjoyed this book so much I couldn’t put it down until I’ve devoured the last chapter, speaks volumes about what a terrific read this is! I assure you it is as awesome as the beautiful cover promises it would be.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
i liked this book a lot and ppl should definetly read this. the ending is especially sweet! justina is a tiny bit like me cuz sometimes i assume that ppl arent nice bcuz of how they look.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I got the sample of this and was interested at first but then right when shes talking it goes back to the beginning of the chapter.. it did this twice.. i dont understand how it happened but the sample was interesting without the flaws.(:
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is amazing , i love this book i can kinda relat to Justina cuz i always asume the worst of things. But this book is great every one will love it
uponalovestory More than 1 year ago
A very cute and funny read. This book was wonderful from start to finish. There wasn't a dull moment. I couldn't put the book down because I kept wonder what was going to happen next. When Justina is piecing together her prom night at 7-Eleven with Gilda and Donna stain by stain I couldn't help but laugh. You can't put the book down because you just have to know where that next stain came from and where the french fry looking bruise came from on her leg. I love that each chapter pertains to a different stain on Justina's dress complete with pictures of said stain. The relationship between Ian and Justina is adorable. They are best friends and seem to know everything about each other. He knows when her blood sugar is getting low and she is in need of a peanut butter cookie and she knows every facial expression he has and exactly what they mean. But could there be more than just friendship there? Nobody seems to really know. Hands down Ditched is and AWESOME novel. I highly recommend this book. You won't regret picking it up.
Icecream18JA More than 1 year ago
This novel was hilarious and will make a reader relive their high school prom fondly. Comparing prom experiences with Justina, the main character, is extremely fun. A reader will laugh from start to finish. Justina Griffith’s story is told by her to two women at her favorite 7-Elven through the stains and bruises she incurred throughout the night. Both women offer her advice and free food while she tells the story of how she ended up flinging herself out of a moving car and landing in a ditch the morning after her prom with no idea where her date is. Was Justina ditched at prom by her best friend and how did she end up with a bruise shaped like a french-fry? Justina is a great narrator with a fun personality. Any female reader fourteen or older will enjoy reading about her wild night at prom. Mellom’s humorous style is perfectly suited for writing. She created memorable characters and sidesplitting scenarios that will leave a reader laughing long after they put the novel down. This book is great and earns five out of five stars!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was great! I loved it! I would recommend this to anyone who loves a love story (considering that is in the title). It really shows that no matter how bad things can get they could get better. I am looking forward to Robin Mellom's next book. This was a really good read, thanks.
Book_WhispererJO More than 1 year ago
Justina is not like most girls, but when she agreed to attend prom with none other than her best friend Ian is promises to be a night she will remember. Anticipating the best night of her life, she never anticipated what the night would actually hold. When the night goes terribly arye, and she finds herself in a ditch the following morning she left to decifer how she ended up here. After months of secretly admiring Ian she had a plan, but nothing turns out the way she thought it would. Ditched is told as Justina delivers her story to the gas station attendant; where she finds herself after waking in the ditch. At first she is unable to remember much of what happened the night before, but as time passes the memories resurface. Only not every question can be answered from her memories. Like where did Ian take off to, and why did her ditch her at their own prom, and how did she end up muddy in a ditch with stains covering her dress. This is a story of humor, ebrassment, and love that will carry readers through the story's end. The pace is slower requiring readers to press through, but still remains entertaining and funny.