Diary ng Panget (Diary ng Panget #1) by HaveYouSeenThisGirL: A Book Review

diaryngpangetDiary ng Panget ( Diary of an Ugly ). This romantic-comedy novel became so successfully phenomenal that it was eventually adapted for a movie in 2014. In fact, the said movie   did well at the box office and redounded its main casts, Nadine Lustre and James Reid to fame. However, it is just the way around when I checked the feedback of the readers here on Goodreads. Most of them gave it  1  out of 5 stars. Most of their reasons are : first, The concept of the story is  “ obviously tweenie boppe-rish  ” and “ immature” as two  of the  readers put it; second, it is out of reality; third,  it  could symbolize the poor literacy in the Philippines as another reader put it; and finally , the part  they cringed at  is that it is  tattered with poor English grammar.

The concept of the story is said to be “ obviously tweenie boppe-rish” ( or for teenyboppers)  and “ immature” , for the character of Eya appears  to be like a teen-ager. The readers  in their  twenties who  gave it a go or  just the teen-aged  readers who claim to be “mature’    may  expect  her to act her age since she is  in college. In other words, at her age, she is expected to be mature and responsible  as what young adults usually do. How do the readers find her so? The way she speaks? Well,  who knows when and how a person should be  mature at her/his age?

The concept of the story is said to be out of reality. The readers must not have known that this is fiction. If  they do, they should not have read it  in the first place. Kung makapag-comment naman, parang hindi nag-aral ng literature in high school.  In short, this is the pigment of the author’s imagination. On the contrary, sometimes fiction can be drawn based on an author’s personal experiences and observations. Therefore, the concept of the story can happen in real life. So if you are ugly,  you can  choose to have a romantic life.

This book  is said to be symbolizing the poor literacy in the Philippines. Maybe because of   the noticeable  parts that raised the brows of the “grammarian” readers and  thus made them  not giving it a quarter of one star : It  is tattered with  some  English grammar mistakes. For instance,  the author must not  make uncountable nouns countable such as “advices” instead of  “ advice”, “ luggages” instead of  “luggage”, “jewelries” instead of “ jewelry”. Also,  she must  not forget the past tense form whenever she refers to something that happened in the past. Furthermore, she should be careful  about using the words she wants to use in describing situation since we have this” word territory” or ‘polysemy “ in English language. For instance, she  should not be confused about the difference between “ invicible” and “invisible”  when Eya describes herself that  you-know-who ignores her as though she cannot be seen  since she is not much of a good look. Invicible means unconquerable , so  invisible is the accurate word , and I believe this is what Eya means to say. Therefore, the revoltingly   conspicuous grammatical mistakes  must be the primary vortex of the readers’  negative opinions of this book .

On the contrary, dear readers, tell it  to the marines! Put the blame on the publisher taken possession of capitalism. It should have helped the author  be guided by a proof-reader. Look at  the credible  publisher of Bob Ong. If you still remember his book Stainless Longganisa,  there is a part that mentions about his publisher   who was always  sending him messages whenever   his proof-reader  found some mistakes in his writings.  As a  matter of fact, don’t  forget  the fact that the author was still 18  when she wrote it. Besides, she is not that typical of a brilliant writer who knows how to write  as efficiently and fluently  as  a  professional  writer who have obtained a Master’s  Degree in Creative Writing.

Admittedly, I even revolted at it  when I  thought of the same ideas above. I am not typical of a reader at my 20’s who is not supposed to read such genre. My friends even you might find me” baduy” ( of bad taste )  . I am no  longer a teen-ager to read it.  But as one of my friends on Goodreads put it, I have this reading horizon. In other words, I read any kinds of books . Besides, it just so happened that I did not read such  YA in my teen-age life. Now I have this regression or recidivistic habit. Gee!  Kinikilig pa rin ako (laughs)

So in the end, I gave it 3 stars because  not only that  I was giddy and I giggled and laughed  my head off , but I also  want to disabuse the readers of their comment that it does not make sense.

The book makes sense. Do you know why? Forget the negative comments above.  Forget being such an intellectual and intelligentsia.  Do not be a hypocrite. The author  educates us all along about   some moral lessons as usual whenever you read a book.

  • Be strong despite that life is unfair. Eya lost both her parents when she was still young, but she never gives up on her life. She remains tough, cheerful, and positive. So, do dare it is out of reality!
  • Believe in yourself. No matter how much you lack of your physical appearance , do not ever underestimate yourself.  It is not about the physical beauty. It is about  the inner beauty that radiates on the outside.
  • There are some quotes which could awake you to what is LOVE. Ponder over them , and you will bring back to your senses. ^^

Finally, the author, Denny, has the potential to be a good writer.  You have to hand it to her.  How come she is able to write such story which young teen-agers can relate to?  I was even  moved.  Hehehe

I have been reviewing  books since I took an active part in Goodreads in 2013. The longer I am into this passion, the more I come to the realization that books of any   genre  could be good reads. There are books that  do not placate you, so you could decide against giving it 1 star which means you did not like it. However, as I always put it , 1 star does not necessarily mean the book is a crap  contrary to what  Virginia Woolf  put, “Books are the mirrors of the soul.

Denny, the real name of the author , wants to be a writer. She hopes to  produce a novel which she can call her  masterpiece someday, so  this book will be the springboard for  her dream.  I hope that she has taken the negative comments above as constructive criticism.


A piece of advice: Denny, just be careful with the consistencies of your plots. For instance, I was confused when Eya  is not able to speak English  as fluently as Lory and Chad. Eya is expected to be smart since she is  a scholar of the academy.  Keep it up! ^_^

Rating: 3/ 5 stars ( I liked it.)


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