For What It's Worth

Thursday, March 18, 2010

REVIEW: The Oracle of Dating by Allison Van Diepen

The Oracle of Dating (Harlequin Teen)
For five bucks, the Oracle of Dating will tell you:
• How to flirt
• If that cute guy you’re crushing on likes you, too
• Whether your new romance will last through lunch period
• And much more
What she won’t tell you? Who she is.

No one at Kayla’s school knows she’s the famous Oracle of Dating — the anonymous queen of dating advice. She doesn’t even have a boyfriend. Two relationship disasters were enough to make Kayla focus on everyone else’s love life.
But then her advice backfires on her own best friend. And Kayla starts to seriously obsess about Jared Stewart — the very cute, very mysterious new guy in school. Suddenly, the teen queen of advice needs her own oracle of dating — and she knows just where to find one… YA Fiction

Kayla likes helping people with their relationships. She’s good at it. So with the help of her older sister she starts up the “Oracle of Dating” website because she thinks teenagers need someone to talk to when they are having dating trouble and need objective and anonymous advice.
What’s her experience in the dating world? Next to none. She’s had two boyfriends, now known as Case Study 1, and Case Study 2. Neither relationship ended very well and she has decided to put off dating until college. Still, she gives good advice and manages to make a little bit of extra cash on the side.
Her friends don’t know about Kayla’s little side project and her world starts spiraling out of control when her advice to her best friend ends in disaster and she finds herself falling for the sexy but brooding new guy from her art class. Not the kind of guy she would – or should – date.
Van Diepen has a fun writing style that kept this story moving. Interspersed throughout the book are instructions on how to flirt and how to find out if your date was really a date. I liked Kayla’s attitude. She kept things in perspective when it came to boys and dating even when things got a little crazy with Jared. I also liked Jared. Brooding but sweet and artsy. He liked Kayla because she was independent and not shallow like other girls. He had me worried there a few times but he’s a keeper!
This is the first book in a new series and I’ll be looking forward to seeing the development of some of the side characters and to where the Kalya/Jared relationship may be headed.
Liked: There was quite a bit of diversity and touched on a few cultural topics as it related to dating. Nice touch.
Nitpick: I didn’t always like some of the things Kayla did, like the fake ID’s, kissing a much older guy at a bar, underage drinking…but I have to admit I did all that soooooo….

Rating: 3.5 out of 4. Yet another fun YA read! Looking forward to the next one!


  1. On the nitpick: That kind of stuff usually bothers me in a YA novel, too! In an adult novel, the protags can drink all they want and do whatever else they like and I'm fine with it, but I really truly am bothered by teen drinking. It always says to me: this character is not very smart and does not pay attention to things that might endanger them.

  2. I really had a problem with the club she went to - fake ID, underage drinking and the much older guy!
    I try not to be a prude, I remember the things I did back then but that was just stupid! and she is otherwise a pretty smart girl.


  3. This sounds like a lovely light-hearted romance, I've downloaded it from Net Galley and am definitely going to read it soon ... enough with the Doom and Gloom novels hehe ... I'm all for some cuteness!