Title: Don’t Call Me Baby
Author: Gwendolyn Heasley
Publication date: April 22, 2014
All her life, Imogene has been known as the girl on THAT blog.
Imogene’s mother has been writing an incredibly embarrassing, and incredibly popular, blog about her since before she was born. Hundreds of thousands of perfect strangers knew when Imogene had her first period. Imogene’s crush saw her “before and after” orthodontia photos. But Imogene is fifteen now, and her mother is still blogging about her, in gruesome detail, against her will.
When a mandatory school project compels Imogene to start her own blog, Imogene is reluctant to expose even more of her life online…until she realizes that the project is the opportunity she’s been waiting for to tell the truth about her life under the virtual microscope and to define herself for the first time.
Don’t Call Me Baby is a sharply observed and irrepressibly charming story about mothers and daughters, best friends and first crushes, and the surface-level identities we show the world online and the truth you can see only in real life.
I flew through Don’t Call Me Baby in one two-hour sitting. With the whole concept of blogging still being “somewhat” new, it was interesting to read a YA book about a teen whose mom is a mommy blogger. I have never read a book like this before and it was refreshing to see something new in the YA world.
Imogene, the victim of mommy blogging, had some incredibly interesting thoughts and opinions on both being the subject of a blog and blogging in general, and it made me think a lot about my own blogging experience. There are times where I have to take a step back and evaluate my blog (and life online in general) and in the future, I’ll be thinking about some of the points she made that really hit home for me. For example, is it really that awful to unplug for a weekend and just enjoy the people there with you in the moment? I don’t know about you, but I have to be reminded of that quite a bit :/
While the book certainly gives an interesting perspective on blogging, it doesn’t dive deep into relationships and emotions. I felt like I could have used some more personality and emotion, especially from Imogene and her mom. The entire book was based on those two, but I felt like their relationship was skimmed over and could have dug deeper. Imogene’s dad and grandma are secondary characters, and I felt like they were more fleshed out and “real.”
If you’re looking for a super-quick, easy read that gives a unique view on the world of blogging, Don’t Call Me Baby is the way to go.