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Thou Shalt Not Dump the Skater Dude and Other Commandments I Have Broken

Thou Shalt Not Dump the Skater Dude and Other Commandments I Have Broken

4.8 5
by Rosemary Graham

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Readers who love Sarah Dessen will enjoy this companion to My Not-So-Terrible Time at the Hippie Hotel

Just when Kelsey is finally fitting into her new California life, C. J. Logan comes along. He's hot, popular, and revered as the best skateboarder around. Girls want to be with him, and boys want to be him. And Kelsey is lucky enough to be his girlfriend


Readers who love Sarah Dessen will enjoy this companion to My Not-So-Terrible Time at the Hippie Hotel

Just when Kelsey is finally fitting into her new California life, C. J. Logan comes along. He's hot, popular, and revered as the best skateboarder around. Girls want to be with him, and boys want to be him. And Kelsey is lucky enough to be his girlfriend. But when she decides that their relationship is over, she could not have imagined what would happen next. With rumors flying, she is forced to figure out who her true friends are and, more importantly, who her true self really is.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
A sensitive, in-depth exploration ofà[a] girl who grows into independence. —Kirkus Reviews
Publishers Weekly
Graham captures some truisms about teen dating in this likable if somewhat uneven novel. Kelsey from My Not-So-Terrible Time at the Hippie Hotel, Graham's first novel, tells her own story here, as her parents' divorce causes her to move from Boston to Berkeley. When the tall, pretty and rich narrator attracts the attention of a popular skater, she enjoys starting freshman year as "C.J. Logan's Girlfriend, plucked from obscurity to be the chosen one of a guy who could have chosen anyone." But Kelsey finally bores of being his accessory, and breaking up proves hard to do: he posts a nasty message on his blog, alleging that she is a "TSF" (Total Sex Fiend) who is practically stalking him. Kelsey has to begin again, asking herself "all the big Who Am Is? you're supposed to ask yourself in high school." The author covers a lot of ground, and a few plot points seem contrived (e.g., when Kelsey joins the school paper, she profiles a homeless teen, and cannot "get her out of my head"). But the author paints a realistic picture of Kelsey and C.J.'s power dynamic: when C.J. meets Kelsey, he grabs her hair to get her to sit next to him, and Kelsey neglects her best friend during her romantic crisis when C.J. asks Kelsey to turn off her cell phone. In the end, this novel delivers plenty of lessons, but Kelsey's honest narration will bring readers along with her as she learns them. Ages 12-up. (Oct.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
Kelsey Wilcox is tall, blonde, beautiful, rich, and the girlfriend of C.J. Logan, the coolest skater dude in town. In the short year since she moved from Boston to California, Kelsey has gone from being a no one to being the most popular girl in school. Her life should be great--but Kelsey realizes that being the girlfriend of a cool skater dude isn't as much fun as she thought it would be. Mostly what she does is wait around for C.J. and run errands for him. So Kelsey does the socially unthinkable thing and breaks up with C.J.--and immediately suffers the consequences. C.J. writes on his web blog that Kelsey is a TSF (total sex fiend) and that he actually dumped her, and Kelsey is ostracized by the popular crowd of which she used to be a part. Kelsey's best friend Amy convinces her to join a school activity to take her mind off being the talk of the school, and Kelsey decides to go out for the prestigious school paper, The Bee. Kelsey is intrigued by the challenge of trying to have a piece published in The Bee. She is also interested in the paper's co-editor, Nathan, who is in a complicated relationship of his own. Kelsey eventually writes an op-ed piece about homeless teens, learns more about herself, confronts her vindictive ex, and might even have the beginnings of a relationship with Nathan. The very likable, very human Kelsey Wilcox is a winning narrator, and the happy ending to this story of high school angst and boy-girl trouble is very satisfying. 2005, Viking, Ages 12 up.
—Lauri Berkenkamp
School Library Journal
Gr 8-10-In My Not-So-Terrible Time at the Hippie Hotel (Viking, 2003), three girls meet during a retreat at a Cape Cod inn. While that novel focuses on Tracy, this new offering tells Kelsey's story. Following her parents' divorce, she moves from Boston to California with her mother and younger brother. After spending eighth grade as an outcast at a small private school, she convinces her parents to let her attend public high school. Tall, blond, and pretty, Kelsey hits the social jackpot when C.J. Logan, a well-known skateboarder, picks her for his girlfriend. At first, being with C.J. is fun, but Kelsey eventually realizes that the relationship is all about him and his ego. When she dumps him at the end of the school year, he retaliates by saying nasty things about her on his blog. To live down her reputation and find her real self, Kelsey joins the superachievers on the school newspaper in the fall. When she realizes that even her brother can read the venom that C.J. is spewing on the Internet, she confronts him and receives an apology and his promise to delete his lies about her. Like Hippie Hotel, this is a story of girl power as Kelsey stands up for herself and takes charge of her life. While the strong feminist message is great, there is not much new here; issues and characters are fairly stereotypical. Still, Kelsey's breezy, edgy, often-wry voice captures high school life and will appeal to fans of teen romances.-Connie Tyrrell Burns, Mahoney Middle School, South Portland, ME Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
This seemingly light coming-of-age story begins with young and immature Kelsey, daughter of wealthy divorced parents, reluctantly moving to San Francisco where she struggles to fit in at her exclusive school. When she enters a more open high school, she almost inadvertently becomes the girlfriend of C.J., a moderately famous skateboarding champion. The romance, however, consists almost entirely of watching C.J. skate and passionate make-out sessions. Kelsey decides to break off the relationship, whereupon C.J. trashes her on the Internet. Kelsey now has to deal not only with being unpopular, but must cope with the fact that virtually everyone believes C.J.'s lies about her. As she learns to stand up for herself, the story becomes deeper and even suspenseful. Graham delivers a sensitive, in-depth exploration of an initially shallow girl who grows into independence, belying the ultra-light title. A very nice job indeed. (Fiction. 12-14)

Product Details

Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date:
Edition description:
Product dimensions:
8.24(w) x 5.38(h) x 0.79(d)
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Read an Excerpt

Thou Shalt Not Dump the Skater Dude


July 17

To all y'all who keep buggin me: Yeah, we broke up. Had to happen. The girl's a Total Sex Fiend. Never wanted to do anything else. I mean, come on, it's usually the girls who complain that we have only one thing on our minds . . . She cried when I told her. Which almost got to me, but I was strong. For those who might be interested in giving her a test-drive, keep in mind that the TSF goes from zero to sixty in no time flat, so operate with caution. That's all I'm sayin.


It's hard to say what was worse:

a.) The true parts,

b.) The made-up parts,

c.) Or the fact that I was reading this on the Internet and anyone who went to EBH would know he was talking about me. The alleged me.

Because-especially if you judged it by what went on that last night-it was true that things had gotten pretty hot between me and C.J.

But that night had been built up to slowly over the course of almost a year. Before C.J., I hadn't done more than kiss. Well, not much more. I'd had a brief-as in one week-seventh-grade romance with an eighth-grader named Brian Thorne back in Boston, which involved a lot of kissing, some with tongue, and a brief moment of under-the-shirt, over-the-bra hand-to-breast contact. But that had done nothing for me except send me into hysterics, because it totally tickled, which totally embarrassed Brian, who never looked me in the face after that.

By the time C.J. came along I was ready to be touched-there and elsewhere. I enjoyed every moment in the front seat of his pickup all those nights. Plus that one night in the hot tub at my grandparents' when he and I got home before Mom and Mim and Leonard came back from the movies. And I'd enjoyed our last night together, even though I had known it was over.

C.J. had touched me in ways and places I'd never been touched before.

And yes, I liked it.

And he knew it. And he knew I didn't want to stop any more than he wanted to stop.

So I guess it really was true, in a way, that I couldn't "get enough." My body wanted more than my head was ready for, and I never pretended otherwise.

But the thing is, we always stopped. Sometimes I was the one to say, "We'd better stop." Sometimes it was C.J. Sometimes he had to get out of the truck and walk around taking deep breaths, but we always stopped.

It wasn't that I was all hung up on being a virgin until I turned some magic number or that I was saving myself for The One. I just wasn't ready in my head to cross the line my body wanted to cross. C.J. said he respected the fact that I didn't feel ready. One time he jokingly asked me if I thought I might feel ready anytime soon, but other than that, he didn't pressure me.

And up until that final night in his truck, getting hot and pulling back made us feel close. Or so I thought.


I didn't discover C.J.'s online rampage until a couple of weeks after he posted it, after it had been sitting there, in view of the whole world. I'd gone to Cape Cod with Dad and Josh, and had a totally fun time at this weird hippie hotel retreat for single parents. I'd met a nice guy there, and we had kissed some and done the holding-hands-while-walking-on-the-beach thing. And I hadn't felt the least bit guilty about it, because I had been completely clear with C.J. and so I was a free agent.

When we got back to Dad's place in Boston, I went online to catch up with e-mail and to IM my new friends Tracy and Beka, whom I'd met at the Cape. Just out of curiosity, I went to C.J.'s blog. Silly me-I was worried about him. He'd seemed so hurt on our last night, I wanted to make sure he was okay. I wanted to see if he was back to his old, skating-obsessed self.

Apparently, he'd discovered a whole new self. A mean, lying, full-of-himself self.

I called Amy.

"Where are you?"

"At the Hut." Java Hut was a café near the U.C. campus where Amy and I would bring our laptops to use their wireless Internet.

"Are you online?"

"Yeah. . . ."

"Go to C.J.'s blog."

"What? Why? I thought you were over him."

"I am. I'm totally over him."

"Okay, and you're reading his blog because . . . ?"

"Please? Would you just please go to cjloganland.com?"

"Okay, okay. . . ." I heard the tapping of her keyboard, then quiet and then, "Oh. Oh. Oh no. What a jerk."

"Why would he do that?"

"Um . . . maybe because he's totally in love with you and can't deal with the fact that you dumped him?"

"Oh please."

"Think about it. No one's ever dumped C.J. Logan. You've, like, broken a commandment or something. 'Thou shalt not dump the Skater Dude.' What we have here is a classic lashing-out scenario. He's hurt and so he's hurting you back."

Amy got quiet again. "Oh no."


"Oh this is not good."


"Have you read the comments?"

Added by urgrl

Friday, August 5, 7:33 PM what a skank! IM me cj-I can make u feel better. <3 (let me be) urgrl

Added by q_t_lizzee

Thursday, July 28, 3:13 PM cj u r better off without the TSF. I saw u skate in Sacto last weekend. I wuz in the white tank top with a butterfly tattoo you smiled & waved. Pls call me my frend has a car. Luv Lizzie xxx-xxx-xxxx

(Note from Kelsey: As stupid and mean as these girls obviously are, I'm not going to stoop to publishing their AIM ids or phone numbers. That would be wrong. Fun maybe, but wrong.)

Added by sk8fan

Tuesday, July 19, 5:11 PM I know a girl like that!!!!!She gave my boyfriend (and now me 2!) warts gross SKANK is rite

I clicked ADD A COMMENT and typed as fast as I could with one hand:

This is all a lie. I broke up with C.J.! He's making this all up because he can't accept the fact that a girl would actually dump him. You are all so pathetic and by the way, don't you know that you're not supposed to post your phone number on the Internet? There are pervs on the lookout for girls like you- TSF(not!)herself

Amy said, "What are you doing?"

"I can't let him get away with these lies." I read her what I wrote.

"And exactly who do you think will believe you?"

"I've got to defend myself." I moved my cursor over the POST button.

"Okay, Kelsey? Stop. Think. Think about what you're about to do."

"I can't let those lies sit out there like that. I have to defend myself."

"And what do you think's going to happen after your post? They'll all just say, 'Oh, okay, I didn't realize, but now that you explain it, I see that C.J. must be saying these things because of his bruised ego.' No. They-or C.J. himself-are going to attack back and it'll-"



"It's too late."

"You posted?"


She just sighed. A very big sigh.


Within two hours, C.J. had written a response to my comment, and this time, it didn't have any basis in reality. He said:

a.) That I'd been calling and IMing him all summer,

b.) That he'd had to change his cell phone number and screen name, and

c.) That he was thinking about getting a restraining order to protect himself. From me!


If I'd only listened to Amy, I might have had a shred of dignity left at the beginning of sophomore year.

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher
A sensitive, in-depth exploration ofà[a] girl who grows into independence. ùKirkus Reviews

Meet the Author

Rosemary Graham is the author of the young adult novels THOU SHALT NOT DUMP THE SKATER DUDE (AND OTHER COMMANDMENTS I HAVE BROKEN) and MY NOT-SO-TERRIBLE TIME AT THE HIPPIE HOTEL, both published by Viking. Her essays and commentaries have appeared in the San Francisco Chronicle, the Santa Monica Review, and on National Public Radio's "All Things Considered." She teaches English and Creative Writing at Saint Mary's College of California and lives in Berkeley with her husband and daughter.


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Thou Shalt Not Dump the Skater Dude and Other Commandments I Have Broken 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 21 reviews.
BeachReaderMom23 More than 1 year ago
This book was a GREAT fun read with alot of the angst of everyday pre-teen and teen life! Its characters dealt with their issues and how to resolve them. I enjoyed the first book so much, I was very excited to find she wrote another. I hope she writes more of this type and style story!
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
Kelsey just can't believe that her mother would decide to up and leave Boston and take Kelsey and her brother along to Berkeley, California, just so she could follow her dreams of going to law school. Except that, for her mother, it seemed like the perfect chance after the divorce was final. Sure, Kelsey may look like a character on The O.C., but she sure doesn't feel right at home in California.

She just wished that her mother would have moved them after her middle school years and before her high school years. And Kelsey has good reason, since when she starts out as an 8th-grader at Susan B. Anthony, it's just way too hard to make friends. Especially when there are only twenty kids in her grade, that have known each other since forever, and have established their own cliques.

But then Kelsey's life begins to pick up some momentum when she starts going out with C.J. Logan, the popular skateboarder. Yet even this doesn't feel right to Kelsey, since when dating C.J., it's all about him, all the time. So Kelsey does what any normal girl would do when it just isn't working out - she breaks up with C.J. Unfortunately, this proves costly toward her reputation. And so now Kelsey has her sights on something much bigger: becoming a reporter for her school newspaper. Well, that and a different boy to crush on.

THOU SHALT NOT DUMP THE SKATER DUDE AND OTHER COMMANDMENTS I HAVE BROKEN is just full of tricks and flips that every teenager goes through. Rosemary Graham cooks up a hilarious novel that teaches us how to ignore all the drama and move on with your life by finding something else to do (getting in a little revenge along the way). Kelsey becomes a heroine to all and you just can't help but want the best for her.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Thou Shalt Not Dump the Skater Dude is so relatable to many teens out there! It's full of fun, boys, drama, and gossip. It gives a feeling of empowerment to the reader and I couldn't put this book down until I was nearly so tired it was unhealthy. It took me 2 days and I LOVED EVERY MINUTE OF IT! I was sad when it was over, though. There should totally be a sequel!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is good if you like modern teen stories. Despite the title, it's mostly about teen drama rather than romance. The characters were all really well developed. My favorite was definitly Nathan. It is written in first person from Kelsey's point of view. In the book she descibes her highschool life but also a very short period of her middle school life as well. In eigth grade, she has just moved after her parent's divorce and is starting at a new school. She is an outcast but then she moves onto highschool and catches the attention of one of the most popular boys in the school, AKA CJ Logan, who is also a professional skate boarder. In the end, they break up and the book goes onto describe the drama that ensues from dumping the hottest guy at school. It also talks about Kelsey's home life and her parents' divorce, her new crush, friends, and just anything highschool/teen related.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was really good Like insanely good
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xxemostardomxx More than 1 year ago
This book was incredable. It was a very fun read for me. I saw this book in my school's library and saw that the title was interesting so I got it. I finished this book in a just a few days. I found that I and almost all of my friends could relate to this story and the drama that Kelsey was going through.
Guest More than 1 year ago
It is about a girl(kelsey) that fell in love with a boy name C.J logan and did stuff in the summer but she is getting tired of him not doing things with her other than it to do with skate boarding, so she discide to brake up with him...that was a mistake or was it ?....
Kianna Ahlstrom More than 1 year ago
ive never read this but it looks preety good so far
Guest More than 1 year ago
omg best book ever! is really funny! everyone should read it!! seriously buy it
Guest More than 1 year ago
i didnt understand the ending.....did she go out w/ nathan in the end when she sayd to Amy 'another night i told him, its your night tonight' whos him? nathan?
Guest More than 1 year ago
I think it was the best book i ever read! It talks about teen life and and being in love, breakups and how to deal with it. For ages 15 +