The Boy Book (Ruby Oliver Quartet Series #2)

The Boy Book (Ruby Oliver Quartet Series #2)

by E. Lockhart


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From E. Lockhart, author of the highly acclaimed, New York Times bestseller We Were Liars, which John Green called "utterly unforgettable," comes The Boy Book, the second book in the uproarious and heartwarming Ruby Oliver novels.

Here is how things stand at the beginning of newly-licensed driver Ruby Oliver's junior year at Tate Prep:

 • Kim: Not speaking. But far away in Tokyo.
 • Cricket: Not speaking.
 • Nora: Speaking--sort of. Chatted a couple times this summer when they bumped into each other outside of school--once shopping in the U District, and once in the Elliot Bay Bookstore. But she hadn't called Ruby, or anything.
 • Noel: Didn't care what anyone thinks.
 • Meghan: Didn't have any other friends.
 • Dr. Z: Speaking.
 • And Jackson. The big one. Not speaking.

But, by Winter Break, a new job, an unlikely but satisfying friend combo, additional entries to The Boy Book and many difficult decisions help Ruby to see that there is, indeed, life outside the Tate Universe.

From the Hardcover edition.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780385732093
Publisher: Random House Children's Books
Publication date: 04/22/2008
Series: Ruby Oliver Quartet Series , #2
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 692,306
Product dimensions: 5.19(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.48(d)
Age Range: 12 Years

About the Author

E. Lockhart is the author of the highly acclaimed New York Times bestseller We Were Liars and the Ruby Oliver quartet (The Boyfriend List, The Boy Book, The Treasure Map of Boys, and Real Live Boyfriends), as well as Fly on the Wall, Dramarama, and How to Be Bad (the last with Sarah Mlynowski and Lauren Myracle). Her novel The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks was a Michael L. Printz Award Honor Book, a finalist for the National Book Award, and winner of a Cybils Award for Best Young Adult Novel. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.

From the Hardcover edition.

Read an Excerpt

The Care and Ownership of Boobs

(a subject important to our study of the male humanoid animal because the boobs, if deployed properly, are like giant boy magnets attached to your chest.

Or smallish boy magnets. Or medium.

Depending on your endowment.

But boy magnets. That is the point.

They are magnets, we say. Magnets!)

1.If you jiggle, wear a bra. This means you. (Yes, you.) It is not antifeminist. It is more comfy and keeps the boobs from getting floppy.

2.No matter how puny your frontal equipment, don’t wear the kind with the giant pads inside. If a guy squeezes them, he will wonder why they feel like Nerf balls instead of boobs. And if you forget and wear a normal bra one day, everyone will then speculate on the strange expanding and contracting nature of your boobage. (Reference: the mysteriously changing chestal profile of Madame Long, French teacher and sometime bra padder.)

3.A helpful hint: For optimal shape, go in the bathroom stall and hike them up inside the bra.

4.Do not perform the above maneuver in public, no matter how urgent you think it is.

5.Do not go topless in anyone’s hot tub. Remember how Cricket had to press her chest against the side of the Van Deusens’ tub for forty-five minutes when Gideon and his friends came home? Let that be a lesson to you. (Yes, you.)

6.Do not sunbathe topless either, unless you’re completely ready to have sunburnt boobs whose skin will never be the same again (Reference: Roo, even though she swears she used sunblock) or unless you want to be yelled at by your mother for exposing yourself to the neighbors (Reference: Kim, even though really, no one saw and the neighbors were away on vacation).

—from The Boy Book: A Study of Habits and Behaviors, Plus Techniques for Taming Them (A Kanga-Roo Production), written by me, Ruby Oliver, with number six added in Kim’s handwriting. Approximate date: summer after freshman year.

The week before junior year began, the Doctors Yamamoto threw a ginormous going-away party for my ex-friend Kim.

I didn’t go.

She is my ex-friend. Not my friend.

Kim Yamamoto was leaving to spend a semester at a school in Tokyo, on an exchange program. She speaks fluent Japanese.

Her house has a big swimming pool, an even bigger yard, and a view of the Seattle skyline. On the eve of her going away, so I hear, her parents hired a sushi chef to come and chop up dead fish right in front of everyone, and the kids got hold of a few wine bottles. Supposedly, it was a great party.

I wouldn’t know.

I do know that the following acts of ridiculousness were perpetrated that night, after the adults got tired and went to bed around eleven.

1.Someone chundered behind the garden shed and never confessed. There were a number of possible suspects.

2.People had handstand contests and it turns out Shiv Neel can walk on his hands.

3.With the party winding down and all the guys inside the house watching Letterman, Katarina Dolgen, Heidi Sussman and Ariel Olivieri wiggled out of their clothes and went skinny-dipping.

4.Nora Van Deusen decided to go in, too. She must have had some wine to do something like that. She’s not usually a go-naked kind of girl.1

5.A group of guys came out onto the lawn and Nora’s boobs were floating on top of the water as she sat on the steps of the pool. Everyone could see them.

6.Shep Cabot, aka Cabbie, who squeezed my own relatively small boob last year with great expertise2 but who is otherwise a lame human being as far as I can tell, snapped a photo—or at least pretended he did. Facts unclear upon initial reportage.

7.Nora grabbed her boobs and ran squealing into the house in search of a towel. Which was a bad idea, because she wasn’t wearing anything except a pair of soggy blue panties. Cabbie snapped, or said he snapped, another photo. The rest of the girls stayed coyly in the pool until Nora, having got her wits together and wearing a pair of Kim’s sweatpants and a T-shirt, came out and brought them towels.

I know all this because no one was talking about anything else on the first day of school.

Nobody spoke to me directly, of course. Because although I used to be reasonably popular, thanks to the horrific debacles of sophomore year—in which I lost not only my then-boyfriend, Jackson, but also my then-friends Cricket, Kim and Nora—I was a certifiable leper with a slutty reputation.

Meghan Flack, who carpools me to school, was my only friend.

Last year, Meghan and her hot senior boyfriend, Bick, spent every waking minute together, annoying all the girls who would have liked to date Bick, and also all the guys who didn’t want to watch the two of them making out at the lunch table.

People hated Meghan. She was the girl you love to hate—not because she does anything mean or spiteful, but because she’s naturally gorgeous, extremely oblivious, and completely boy-oriented. Because she licks her lips when she talks to guys, and pouts cutely, and all the guys stare at her like they can’t pull their eyes away.

But I don’t hate her now. She doesn’t even bug me anymore. And she was lost on the first day of school junior year, because Bick had left for Harvard the week before.

So Meghan and I were standing in front of the mail cubbies when we heard a crew of newly minted senior girls discussing Kim’s party and what happened. Then we heard more from the guys who sat behind us in American Literature, and then from a girl who is on the swim team with me. By the end of first period it was clear that Nora’s boobs were going to be the major focus of nearly every conversation for the rest of the day.

Because Nora is stacked.

Really stacked.

She is just not a small girl.

2 Yes, only one boob. Long story.

1 Nora was the only one of my old foursome (her, me, Cricket and Kim) who had never yet experienced some social or bodily horror related to taking her top off. See The Boy Book entry, above.

From the Hardcover edition.

Customer Reviews

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The Boy Book: A Study of Habits and Behaviors, Plus Techniques for Taming Them: Ruby Oliver Series, Book 2 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 66 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As I stepped into Ruby's world I found myself being amazed each and every step of the way. The story truly depicts the girl world with its ups and downs. You live Ruby's emotions as if they were ones own. All the boys in the story are like the many we know in our personal life like: the jock, the band geek, the rocker, the stud, the nerd, and the normal guy. Ruby lets the reader see and comprehend what girls do when the are mad and alone. I laughed endlessly because Ruby did the weirdest things. This book is truly amazing!!!!!!!!!!
MickyFine on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
THIS REVIEW WILL CONTAIN SPOILERS FOR THE BOYFRIEND LISTIt's the beginning of junior year and Ruby is in possession of a driver's license and possibly a friend or two. Of course, she's still obsessing about boys, including her ex-boyfriend, Jackson, who's gotten a whole lot friendlier since Ruby's former best friend and his current girlfriend, Kim, left on an exchange trip for Japan. With lots of boy drama and a healthy helping of footnotes, Ruby attempts to make it through the first half of junior year.All of the same delights from the first book with more character growth for Ruby thrown in. I love that these books include references to such a diverse range of culture on a sideline to the main narrative, including AC/DC, Plato's The Cave, and Cry-Baby, among others. Pure fun.
erendida01 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
the novel the boy book encompasses a girl that tries to get her friends back in the beginning she tries to get her boyfriend back from her bestfriend the protagonist struggles with boyfriend problems, throughout the middle she preserves through finding new friends. by the end she has learned that she didnt need her bestfriend.
stephxsu on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Ruby Oliver is back and more beloved than ever! At the start of junior year, Roo¿s ex-best friend Kim is in Japan, and she¿s still not speaking with her ex-boyfriend Jackson, whom Kim ¿stole¿ because she believed they were meant for each other. The only two people she¿s sort of friends with are Noel, a guy who can be in any social group or none at all anytime he wants, and Nora, the only one out of her original group of four friends who will still speak with her. Roo continues her therapy sessions with Dr. Z and starts an internship at the zoo.Here are the boys in her life: Angelo, a hot family friend whom she¿s scamming with, meaning that they make out but aren¿t technically ¿together¿; Jackson, the dreaded ex who¿s been sending her notes although he¿s Kim¿s boyfriend; and Noel. Roo can¿t figure out her feelings for Noel. Sure, there have been moments when she thought he was going to kiss her. But Roo¿s not in therapy for no reason; she has to work out her feelings. With her reputation and social life only beginning to recover from her leper-like end of sophomore year, she has to do the right thing so that she won¿t end up alone again. And sometimes the right thing isn¿t always the thing she wants.I enjoyed THE BOY BOOK so much more than its prequel. In this book, Roo and her friends come up as more rounded and human characters. Anyone can relate to someone in the book, and I can understand each character¿s actions, though they may not be the best ones. E. Lockhart is a master of teen dialogue, and there is something in this book for every reader.
sdbookhound on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Liked this book better than the first. An enjoyable read.
jenniferthomp75 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
As entertaining as the first book in this series. Lockhart does a great job mimicking the thoughts and actions of a teen girl trying to figure out who she is. Many of Ruby's actions remind me of my own when I was a teenager - not always the smartest but well-intentioned (well, sometimes...).Highly recommended!
amber96 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The novel, The Boy Book by E. Lockhart encompasses don't go after unavailable boys. In the beginning, Ruby Oliver, struggles with telling readers of tips to get boys. Throughout the middle she perseveres through explaining how she lost her bestfriend and her boyfriend. By the end she has learned that her bestfriend and her will never be friends again and she will never get her boyfriend back. (193/193)
pokylittlepuppy on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
It is pretty much crazy how much these novels read like a handbook for being a person. In context you might think that they are really just an explanation of how one first-world girl is living, with lots of hot tubs and cell phones, though she is not herself the owner of hot tubs or cell phones. And they are that, surely. Mostly because all of the people around Ruby, affecting her, are that context.But yes. So good that one writer decided to just make it her job to unpack that life and see what files where. I am going to explain everything about what it's like to be a girl this way. Even what it's like to be a girl in one of the least tragic times and places to be a girl in -- someone who's very lucky, taking things very hard, and being a very good person.I think you can tell that's what these books are about because she does not get the happy ends of comedies. Twice now. The books are light, but still she gets the ends where she has regrets and is back in therapy.And indeed, it is hard not to kiss Noel your darn self, reading these. And not to tear the book in two when Kim shows up in this new haircut and is still so bad, so mean, am I right ladies.It's nice there's more to come.
heike6 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Very cute book (sequel to The Boyfriend List), makes me glad I'm not in high school anymore. I would recommend it to any teenage girl because it will help them put their lives into perspective. The main character is a high school junior, Ruby Oliver, who is pretty much normal- does stupid things, has humiliating things happen to her, etc. The moral of the story is that there really is more to life than boys. ;-)
callmecayce on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Second book in the Ruby Oliver series and I loved just as much as the first one, if not more. I cannot wait for the next book(s) in the series. The Boy Book delves a bit deeper into Ruby's troubles, and the problems that she has (both her fault and the fault of others). I really like everything about this series. I'm not sure if it's because my high school was pretty painful (to me, apparently other people don't feel this way) or just because Lockhart's story telling is brilliant. But I found myself just devouring these books.
bwoodreader on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The second book about Ruby Oliver stands alone as a wonderful book about a girl finding her way after her friends don't like her anymore. She broke the rules about boyfriends, and now she is out. As she goes through her junior year, she stuggles with mistakes she has made, feeling about new friends, and how to cure herself of her panic attacks. Ruby makes out with a boy, but nothing too graphic!
BoundWithWords More than 1 year ago
This book was the beginning of my love story for this series, while I did liked the first book I wasn't completely head over heels for it, but on this one Ruby won me over. In this book she is starting over, with her old friends and Jackson still totally ignoring her she has to start a new group of friend and a new life - I totally loved Noel, Meghan and Nora (Nora hangs out with them in this book right?), each of them bringed something to their little group and here was when my love for Noel started to happen too. The trip at the end (?) of this one was great too, I loved the talk Kim and Ruby had and it shows how much Ruby grew so far. If I had to change one thing on this one: I would kill Jackson on the most slow and painful way. Oh also, at the beginning of each chapter there is an excerpt from The Boy Book - a book Ruby and Kim (and occasionally Cricket and Nora) would write about the things they learned about boys.
BoundlessBookaholic More than 1 year ago
This was my least favorite of all the Ruby Oliver books, but it was still great nevertheless. I ended up giving The Boy Book 4 out of 5 stars. So Ruby’s old friends pretty much suck, which you learned about in the first book. In this book, they continue to suck. But Nora starts to suck a little less. Once again the series continues to be hilarious and engaging. I loved reading about Ruby’s encounters with the opposite sex, trying to figure out what she’s going to do/who she might date next. As she continues to go to therapy, Ruby keeps picking up on “therapy talk” and realizing what kind of things her shrink would say as the series progresses. This book just wasn’t as good as the other three, but I still enjoyed it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ps) i absolutely LOVE Noel!!! Id love to meet a guy like him. #reviews by a 17 year old girl
MissPrint More than 1 year ago
Since the end of her disastrous sophomore year at Tate Prep Ruby Oliver has: * Continued going to therapy * Befriended fellow Tate Prep misfits Noel, Hutch and Meghan * Lost all of her other friends and her first ever boyfriend Although the panic attacks are in check and the wounds sting a little less, Ruby's reputation is still in tatters. Her former best friends all still hate her (except maybe Nora . . . or maybe not). She still has panic attacks. It's not the best situation but Ruby is prepared to do her best to deal with it all including: getting a job, scamming, deciphering the many secrets of boys (including Noel, Angelo, and her ex, Jackson), and even going on a school trip that might not be a total disaster (although from past experience Ruby isn't getting her hopes up) in The Boy Book: A Study of Habits and Behaviors, Plus Techniques for Taming Them (2006) by E. Lockhart. The Boy Book is the second book in Lockhart's Ruby Oliver series (preceeded by The Boyfriend List). The book could stand alone but honestly since they're so short it's worth just reading them all in order. The Boy Book is a slim, fun book. Ruby's life is not glamorous, or perfect, but it is real. Lockhart blends humor, wit, and a bit of mayhem to deal with weighty matters and rescuing hooters in need alike. As the title suggests there are boys in The Boy Book but what really sets this book apart (like The Boyfriend List) is Lockhart's treatment of friendships. Friends aren't forever, no matter what we might hope, and Ruby deals with that sadness and the process of moving on (but she calls it Reginald) throughout the story. This series is fun because it's hysterical but Lockhart stays true to her exemplary literary standards. Readers can observe the growth of Ruby's character over the course of the books. Interestingly, having read both The Boy Book and Lockhart's Printz honor book The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks. (Isn't Ruby kind of like Frankie before Frankie turns criminal mastermind? Maybe after as well. The similarities between Jackson and Frankie's boyfriend, or even maybe Alpha, are also striking.) At the end of the day The Boy Book is a funny, light-hearted read. It is authentic and marvelous and, even when Ruby is at her lowest, The Boy Book is optimistic and hopeful. Ruby's (mis)adventures continue in The Treasure Map of Boys. Possible Pairings: Girl at Sea by Maureen Johnson, Alice, I Think by Susan Juby, Vibes by Amy Kathleen Ryan, The Unwritten Rule by Elizabeth Scott, Absolutely Maybe by Lisa Yee
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
meganwhitaker More than 1 year ago
Book title and author: The Boy Book written by: E. Lockhart Title of review: The Boy Book Number of stars (1 to 5): 4 I loved The Boy Book by: E. Lochhart. It¿s the perfect book for you. This book has a lot of big words and talks about boys who just love girls boobs. This book will totally catch ur attention. So if you are boy or girl crazy then this book is meant for you. So if you love relationships oh and (boobs) then STOP doing whatever you are doing and go get this book. In this book its about boys who are crazy over girls. There are 7 characters names are: Kim, Cricket, Nora, Noel, Meghan, Dr. Z, and of course Jackson. There are 13 chapters which are not that long. This book is so AWESOME!!!!! Well its about these kids who are the ages of 12 and 13. And well Kim was going to Tokyo, for a exchange program. And Meghan is the one who does not talk much. She wont talk to Kim or even Cricket. The Boy Book is the second book of a series. So far there are 2 books written by E. Lockhart well those books are called The Boyfriend List and The Boy Book. It¿s a really awesome series. But you might want to start with the first book. So lets hope E. Lockhart wrights more books in this series. It is proven that The Boy Book is the best so far out of the series. The Boy Book is a really good book. I loved reading it. I jus couldn¿t get enough on it. It was so good that I didn¿t even want to put it down. You should really read The Boy Book. I give this book 5 stars.
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