Thursday, October 15, 2009

Cracked up to Be Review

First, a disclaimer: this book is not for our young readers, despite being YA. It's definitely older YA, and then only for kids who can handle adult themes, language, and consequences.

OK, onto the review.

I have three children. I have a very, very hard time getting *lost* in books these days. This is only the fourth book this year (and it's October, people) to suck me in so that I was reading while making dinner, reading while the kids bathed, reading when I should be sleeping. It grabs hold and doesn't let go - and if you wonder if you'd have the same reaction, the author has graciously put up the first four chapters for you to sample.

This is the story of Parker Fadley, who is the most popular girl in school, not because of any inherent popularity, but because being popular is just part of being perfect in high school - and Parker is perfect. Or she was. Being perfect costs you. And it might even cost you your sanity. Something cost Parker at least part of hers, and you find out over the course of the novel what it was. What *did* happen to Parker Fadley?

If you've ever read writing advice, at the top of the list is "show don't tell". I have never seen that applied so precisely as this novel. She could tell us that Parker is freaking out. But we feel it - and we also feel what a strong, intelligent girl she is, and we hope like to high heaven that she gets it together at the end of the book.

There's even a love story for you romantics out there. ;)

I wouldn't say this is *sensual* in the way romance novels are, more matter of fact about sex. But sex is on the page, or at least - almost on the page. She does cut away, I think.

I hope you all read it and love it as much as I did!


suzie said...

Oh I LOVED Cracked Up to Be! Courtney Summers is such an amazing writer! I just finished reading her new book SOME GIRLS ARE which comes out in Jan, and it's amazing too :)

Kimber An said...

Great job, Robin! Doesn't sound like my cup of tea, but that's another reason why I don't do this blog alone. Now, if only Parker had learned her daddy was an alien and her mama was an elf...