Review: Uses for Boys by Erica Lorraine Scheidt

Uses for BoysGenre: YA Contemporary Romance
Published: January 15, 2013 by St. Martin’s Press
Length: 240 pages
Source: St. Martin’s Press (ARC)
Amazon | Goodreads

Anna remembers a time before boys, when she was little and everything made sense. When she and her mom were a family, just the two of them against the world. But now her mom is gone most of the time, chasing the next marriage, bringing home the next stepfather. Anna is left on her own—until she discovers that she can make boys her family. From Desmond to Joey, Todd to Sam, Anna learns that if you give boys what they want, you can get what you need. But the price is high—the other kids make fun of her; the girls call her a slut. Anna’s new friend, Toy, seems to have found a way around the loneliness, but Toy has her own secrets that even Anna can’t know.

Then comes Sam. When Anna actually meets a boy who is more than just useful, whose family eats dinner together, laughs, and tells stories, the truth about love becomes clear. And she finally learns how it feels to have something to lose—and something to offer. Real, shocking, uplifting, and stunningly lyrical, Uses for Boys is a story of breaking down and growing up.


See the cover? See it? See it? The story is exactly like that and more (if you know what I mean). Uses for Boys was a surprise read for me. I was not expecting the sex scenes at all. It is not a light contemporary read, and I’m not sure if everyone would enjoy reading it due to that. What I liked about it is it’s fast paced and straightforward. It took me two days to finish reading it. Although it is intended for young adults, there are a lot of scenes meant for adults. The whole book was basically about Anna getting all the guys. I was kind of bothered by the detailed descriptions, and I’m sure some will be too.

I wasn’t sure what to feel for Anna. At the beginning I felt a lot of sympathy for her because her mother would always leave her alone in the house. I think Anna was 8 years old at that time? I suck at remembering things, anyways her mother would end up with a new guy, they marry, move, then divorce. That happened so many times that it just became an ordinary thing for Anna and her mom. Eventually she decided to move out, and followed her mother’s footsteps (which is bringing guys home). The last time we get to see Anna is when she’s 16. That’s the time where I kind of got annoyed by her character. She still didn’t learn her lesson. But then again she didn’t have a family to guide her as she was growing up. But she didn’t drop out of school till she was 16 so I’m pretty sure she has a clue of what’s right and what’s wrong. It wasn’t clear what was on Anna’s mind (like how she takes her decisions) because the whole book is basically about Anna wanting to have sex and she wants to tell about it to her friend Toy. I don’t know how else to describe her because it didn’t really say much in the book although she’s the one who’s narrating it. I think she’s innocent but not really at the same time.

The ending wasn’t what I expected at all. I felt shocked that it just ended like that. It was an open ending. It says on the summary that it’s about “breaking down and growing up”. For me I Anna grew physically, but the choices that she was making didn’t really change as she was growing up. If you want to get out of your usual light-contemporary reads, then you should give this one a go!3.5 of 5

1 Response to “Review: Uses for Boys by Erica Lorraine Scheidt”

  1. 1 Anne C January 5, 2013 at 10:04 AM

    “Sex scenes” and “A lot of scenes made for adults”. This is not an appropriate book to give to pre-teens and younger cousins then. Although if they really want to read it, they will find a way. People can be very curious.

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