Saturday, September 12, 2009

How NOT to Spend Your Senior Year by Cameron Dokey

Genre: YA Fiction

One Word Review: Odd (but not in a bad way)

First Line: “The story you are about to read is 100 percent true.”

Synopsis: “Jo O'Connor has spent her whole life moving around. When it comes to new schools, there's not a trick in the book about starting over that Jo doesn't know. But life is about to teach her a new trick: how to disappear entirely. They have to move again. Now. This very night. Jo knows better than to argue. Her dad is the key witness in a major case against a big-time bad guy. But Jo just can't resist one last visit to the school where she's been so happy. All she wants is to say good-bye. That can't cause any problems, can it? Now Jo's one last visit has landed her smack in the middle of a ghost story. Specifically, her own. By the time it's over, she'll have a whole new set of rules about what's real, what's make-believe, and -- most of all -- what's important." -GoodReads

Kathy’s Review: I have mixed feelings about this one. I really liked that the story was so unique and original. I like the idea that Jo and her Dad are in the witness protection program and are constantly “on the run”. It added a nice element to the story and it was fun seeing Jo’s take on transitioning through different schools. On the flip side, it was almost too unbelievable. I can’t say much without giving away details, but I will say that I found it hard to believe that people wouldn’t recognize Jo as Jo (That probably sounds cryptic, but you’ll understand once you read the book). There is a kind of love triangle (or square) going on, and I didn’t really believe in any of it. Jo’s first crush seems to happen a bit too quickly; they never really spend any time together and yet are totally in love. When that doesn’t work out she gets over it a bit too quickly, especially for someone who had been so in love. So, when she falls for someone else it makes me wonder if it’s just a passing thing. Okay, I probably gave away some spoilers there, but really the story is pretty predictable so I probably haven’t ruined anything. Overall, it was an entertaining read, I only wish there had been a little more believability with the plot. I did like the story though, it was upbeat, unique, clean and overall was pretty enjoyable.

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