Friday, July 11, 2014

17 First Kisses by Rachael Allen [Review]

17 First Kisses4 out of 5 Robots!

17 First Kisses by Rachael Allen
Genre: YA Contemporary Fiction
Release: June 17, 2014
Paperback: 319 Pages
Publisher: HarperTeen
My Copy: Publisher (Edelweiss)
Reviewer: Shannon
Buy the Book: Amazon

Book Summary:
No matter how many boys Claire kisses, she can’t seem to find a decent boyfriend. Someone who wouldn’t rather date her gorgeous best friend, Megan. Someone who won’t freak out when he learns about the tragedy her family still hasn’t recovered from. Someone whose kisses can carry her away from her backwoods town for one fleeting moment.

Until Claire meets Luke.

But Megan is falling for Luke, too, and if there’s one thing Claire knows for sure, it’s that Megan’s pretty much irresistible.

With true love and best friendship on the line, Claire suddenly has everything to lose. And what she learns—about her crush, her friends, and most of all herself—makes the choices even harder.

In her moving debut, Rachael Allen brilliantly captures the compl exities of friendship, the struggles of self-discovery, and the difficulties of trying to find love in high school. Fans of Sarah Ockler, Susane Colasanti, and Stephanie Perkins will fall head over heels for this addictive, heartfelt, and often hilarious modern love story.

(Courtesy of the Publisher)

Shannon's Thoughts:
17 First Kisses managed to do something that most contemporary YA doesn't.  It managed to take me back to high school when EVERYTHING was loaded with meaning, gossip was rampant, and drama abounded.  It all felt very real to me. I wasn't involved in a lot of drama, but I was in band and band kids tended to date other band kids and THAT created drama.  I could relate to a lot of it based on things that happened to my friends.

Perhaps my favorite part is the push-pull of teenage relationships, both romantic and platonic.  It wasn't always pretty, or nice, or comfortable.  All the characters do some pretty questionable things and some of it made me very uncomfortable.  But I also think that's I liked about it.  I liked the messiness.  But be warned, if you like your protagonists to be nice, you won't find that here.  I'm not saying Claire is a bad person.  I'm saying that she doesn't always do the nice thing and it can be frustrating.  For example, you may be really annoyed at Claire and Megan's competition to win Luke (I know I was), but these things really do happen.  I personally don't need my protagonists to be angels, just relatable. 

I also liked how the little flashbacks to Claire's previous kisses also tell give us the backstory on Claire and Megan's friendship and Claire's family.  I thought that part was especially well done.  I wasn't too surprised at the actual outcome of the book, but I really enjoyed getting there.  Overall, I thought this was a strong addition to the YA Contemporary canon with realistic characters and situations.  As I mentioned, it isn't always pretty or easy, but I thought Allen handled it deftly.

Disclosure:  I reviewed a copy free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.

1 comment :

  1. I have heard some good things about this book
    It seems like it is very controversial and thought-provoking
    great review
    Your reader



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