Published September 5, 2011
Amazon - Goodreads
Most high school sports teams have rivalries with other schools. At Hamilton High, it's a civil war: the football team versus the soccer team. And for her part,Lissa is sick of it. Her quarterback boyfriend, Randy, is always ditching her to go pick a fight with the soccer team or to prank their locker room. And on three separate occasions Randy's car has been egged while he and Lissa were inside, making out. She is done competing with a bunch of sweaty boys for her own boyfriend's attention
Then Lissa decides to end the rivalry once and for all: She and the other players' girlfriends go on a hookup strike. The boys won't get any action from them until the football and soccer teams make peace. What they don't count on is a new sort of rivalry: an impossible girls-against-boys showdown that hinges on who will cave to their libidos first. But what Lissa never sees coming is her own sexual tension with the leader of the boys, Cash Sterling...
I definitely regret not picking this book up sooner because, oh my goodness, Kody Keplinger did it again! I was a little worried Shut Out wouldn't live up to my high expectations because I absolutely adored her first book, The DUFF, but it just totally surpassed what I had hoped for.
I loved how this book was so much more than a story about the girlfriends of soccer and football players going on a 'hookup strike' to get the teams to stop fighting. Throughout the chaos of the strike Lissa learned a lot about a double standard in our society: If a girl does't sleep with someone, she's a prude. If she does, she's a slut and then there's the whole case of when a guy sleeps with someone that's fine because he's a boy. I honestly never really thought about this before, but now that this book opened my eyes to this, it really makes me angry! I loved how Keplinger still educated me about this issue in a way where I almost didn't know she was. When I was reading I didn't think 'Oh, the author is just trying to get me to understand the double standards in today's society.' It was apart of the story which made it not come across in a preachy way.
The main character, Lissa, is intelligent, caring and a little kooky! I loved how it felt like I was in her head while reading the book and that the decisions she made were realistic. She is such a dynamic character who learns a lot about herself and the other people around her throughout the course of the story.
Lissa's love interests were pretty awesome too! I really enjoyed how the two guys, Randy and Cash, didn't seem all that different, but once you got to know them there was less stuff in common between the two than I thought. I loved how Cash loved reading and was pretty much a literature buff! *Swoon*
My favorite part of the book was when all of the girls would get together and discuss how the strike was going. They never really talked before because of the whole football-soccer feud so it was awesome to see how alike they all were and how they all supported each other even if they didn't necessarily get along all the time.
There really is no other character like Lissa's best friend, Chloe. She is who she is and she sure as hell wasn't going to apologize for that, which I loved! She wasn't afraid to be herself and if anyone had a problem with that it really didn't matter to her. I enjoyed how outgoing and just flat-out honest she was. In books there really aren't many female characters that are forward about their sex lives, so in a way, Chloe's bluntness was refreshing.
"You can't control everything," Dad said. "Sometimes you just need to relax and have faith that things will work out. Let go a little and let life happen. You don't want to miss out on the best parts of life just because you were afraid of getting hurt."
Shut Out is an absolutely amazing story filled with kick ass characters, heart warming moments and, of course, plenty of swoon worthy guys. A must read for any fan of contemporary young adult fiction! I cannot wait until Kody Keplinger's next book to be released this year. I know it will be incredible, just like her first two!