Another Unpopular Opinion – 'On the Fence' is Ridiculously Terrible

If you want to be constantly cringing while reading, then by all means, go ahead and read this book. I swear to god, I could not stop being annoyed at this even if I so desperately wanted to. And I really wanted to love this because once again, it seemed like everybody else loved it and here I am, wondering what in the hell is wrong with me.

But alas, another unpopular opinion from yours truly because I seriously just could not get on board with the hype over this Young Adult/Contemporary novel that seemed to have captured the hearts of many.

on the fence cover

For sixteen-year-old Charlotte Reynolds, aka Charlie, being raised by a single dad and three older brothers has its perks. She can outrun, outscore, and outwit every boy she knows—including her longtime neighbor and honorary fourth brother, Braden. But when it comes to being a girl, Charlie doesn’t know the first thing about anything. So when she starts working at chichi boutique to pay off a speeding ticket, she finds herself in a strange new world of makeup, lacy skirts, and BeDazzlers. Even stranger, she’s spending time with a boy who has never seen her tear it up in a pickup game.

To cope with the stress of faking her way through this new reality, Charlie seeks late-night refuge in her backyard, talking out her problems with Braden by the fence that separates them. But their Fence Chats can’t solve Charlie’s biggest problem: she’s falling for Braden. Hard. She knows what it means to go for the win, but if spilling her secret means losing him for good, the stakes just got too high.

What made this book so incredibly horrible is the protagonist — Charlie. She’s just so fucking annoying that if she were standing in front of me, I would have slapped her right then and there.

Okay, I’m totally against any type, shape, and/or form of violence but this girl needs a serious reality check because she’s just so goddamn fucked up.

While I was reading this, I could not help but post “status updates” on Goodreads. It’s how strong and intense my feelings are for this — Charlie, to be more specific.

“…and I ended up throwing him and his family under a bus to make myself feel better. And even though I knew it hurt him, what he had said still bothered me, so I wasn’t quite ready to apologize.”

This girl is too fucking selfish, than even I, an admittedly self-centered person (about 40% of the time), could not even wrap my head around her selfishness. I mean really, you knowingly throw someone under the bus (and his family as well) just to make yourself feel better because you just can’t handle your own emotions?

And not only that, you already know that you hurt this person — who, by the way, is a really close friend of yours and one that you’ve known for more than half of your life — but you still refuse to apologize because why again?

And no, there wasn’t even a part in this book where Charlie actually apologized for her actions. Nope. It was all “we good? Okay, we good” type of thing. It’s just so fucking horrible.

“He was the one who’d called me not only stubborn but clueless.”

This girl also has the audacity to get pissed off when someone slaps her with the truth. Well, bitch, you really are stubborn and clueless.

Then there’s that big chunk of this book where all Charlie did was pretend to be someone she’s not and while she does acknowledge that, she still doesn’t do anything about it.

Seriously, who the fuck pretends that their mother is still alive when they know for fucking sure that she’s dead? Who in their right mind does that? Oh yeah, this girl because apparently, she hates it when people feel sorry for her when they find out that she’s only left with one parent now.

Girl, who the fuck cares? If you want to make people feel, believe, and think that you’re strong, THEN ACTUALLY SHOW THEM THAT YOU ARE and not this pretentious shit that you’re doing right here.

And oh, let’s not get into this other thing where Charlie just pretends to be someone she’s totally not for a guy. For a fucking guy, folks. Nobody should ever have to pretend to be someone they’re not just to gain approval or acceptance from anyone.

“What was that all about?” he asked.
I took a deliberate step away from him. “What?”
“You pretending you knew nothing about baseball?”
“That was me being a good date.”
How is pretending that you don’t anything about something you being a good date?

He grunted and got that typical look he got when someone said something stupid—chin drawn down, eyes on the verge of rolling. “Really? Because it seem like that was you playing dumb.”

“Whatever. That didn’t mean you had to go and do that.”
Bitch, please.

“Do what?”
“Invite him tomorrow.”
“Your brothers wanted to meet him. They texted me.” He held up his phone, as if that should make me feel better.
I tried to calm down by drawing a deep breath.
“Why are you so mad?” I wasn’t a fan of the fact that he could read me so well in that moment.
“Because you just took one of my favorite things away from me.”
One of your favorite things and yet you’re hiding it from someone that you’re supposedly going out with.

“I haven’t taken anything away from you.”
My chest was tight and I had an overwhelming desire to punch him. “I can’t play tomorrow. I’ll have to sit on the sidelines, cheering you on.”

“Why would you have to do that? You’re an awesome football player.”

“Because, Braden, Evan will be there.”
He put on a rare angry face. “If you can’t be yourself around him, then you shouldn’t be dating him.”
I laughed a low mocking laugh. “Oh, yeah, be myself. Tackle guys, fall in the mud, score touchdowns, that’s real appealing to guys.”
This girl really is clueless.

“It is to some guys.”
Exactly; some guys. So why not just date one of those some guys?

“Really, Braden? Who? Tell me! Because I’ve been playing sports with the same ten guys for the last five years of my life and never has one of them hit on me, let alone asked me out. Not one! Do you think any of them see me as someone they would date? Of course they don’t. They see me as—let me see, what were the terms you guys used at disc golf the other day? Oh, that’s right—a big, burly girl. If they want someone to date, they go to the mall or the club and find a girl who wears tight clothes and does her nails and giggles at their jokes.
“I see the way guys look at Amber. I saw the way you looked at Amber. Guys don’t want a competitor, they want a cheerleader. So excuse me if I feel like I have to compromise a little of who I am to make a guy”—I pointed up the road—“a cute, nice guy, actually look at me like I’m not his teammate.” My eyes stung with anger.

Then gurl, you are dating the wrong type of guy.

Braden took a step back this time. Then he squeezed his eyes shut before opening them again.
“You are so clueless. I don’t believe you, the most stubborn girl in the world, would be willing to do that for a guy who’s not even worth the time or effort. You don’t have to pretend to be anyone else. Your brothers are going to die.”

Clueless, indeed.

Above is a long-ass excerpt from the book but read it and tell me that it’s not so fucked up and so cringe-y and so annoying and everything that any person — not just a girl — should not be.

I don’t know why this book got so much love. I just don’t.

Don’t even bother wasting your time on this one. Not worth even an ounce of your energy.

Check out my 2018 Reading Challenge — a growing list of books that I read this year. 

9 thoughts on “Another Unpopular Opinion – 'On the Fence' is Ridiculously Terrible

  1. You’re triggered again, Victoria. Haha. Nakakatawa basahin mga reviews mo sa books kasi hindi mo hate yung book itself pero yung characters. Haha. Kulit lang. Nakakaaliw. 😂


    1. When the main character is horrible, it affects the entire book. Even if the plot’s somewhat okay, pag nakakaputa yung protagonist, nawawalan na siya ng kwenta. So I suppose I hate the book itself as well.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. E baka kasi sinadya din ng author na ganon para mas makatotohanan or mas fit sa sitwasyon or twist nung story. Idk. I just think may reason yung author para gawing ganon yung main character. Hihi

        Pero baka iba iba lang talaga tayo ng expectation sa mababasang book. ☺️

        Liked by 1 person

      2. It didn’t really fit, though. The plot of the story didn’t have any twist. It was simply about this girl who’s so fucking stubborn and annoying. And this guy that he liked. Yun lang. Nothing special. And the character really is horrible. Characters affect stories. If Harry Potter weren’t likeable, I don’t think na sisikat yung librong yun, despite the plot and twists of the story. Hahaha

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Exactly! She’s like “but I’m not like other girls” and then she goes off being pretentious and then /wanting/ to be like those other girls while simultaneously still screaming to the world that she’s very different.



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