Review : Cracked up to be
Cracked up to Be by Courtney Summers
Pages : 214
Genre : YA, Fiction
Series : Stand Alone
My Rating :
From the Back of the Book :
When “Perfect” Parker Fadley starts drinking at school and failing her classes, all of St. Peter’s High goes on alert. How has the cheerleading captain, girlfriend of the most popular guy in school, consummate teacher’s pet, and future valedictorian fallen so far from grace?
Parker doesn’t want to talk about it. She’d just like to be left alone, to disappear, to be ignored. But her parents have placed her on suicide watch and her counselors are demanding the truth. Worse, there’s a nice guy falling in love with her and he’s making her feel things again when she’d really rather not be feeling anything at all.
Nobody would have guessed she’d turn out like this. But nobody knows the truth.
Something horrible has happened, and it just might be her fault.
It’s been a little while since I’ve read this book, and the main reason why I’ve waited so long to write my review was because I wasn’t sure how to do it. I liked it a lot – it almost made my “best of 2009” list, but something holds me back from loving it completely as other readers did.
Summers’ writing is straightforward and captivating, and I was hooked from the first page. What made me enjoy it less, maybe, was that I found that the story was slightly predictable. I mostly guessed, soon enough in the book, what had happened, so all the mystery the author did around the events didn’t work really well for me. In all honesty though, I still enjoyed the book and loved how the author brought us into Parker’s life. The story was really quick and powerful, in a “punch-in-the-gut” kind of way, and after all this time I still remember it vividly. It’s not the kind of story you can read bout, toss on a shelf and forget you read it. It haunts you for at least a little while after you read it!
Parker isn’t the most likable character, but that’s not the point, either. (I find that very troubled characters are usually so absorbed by their problems that they aren’t likable, but I also believe that such characters don’t exist to be loved.) Still, I could feel for her and I cared about her, especially when my first impressions were confirmed towards the end : it gave all its sense to Parker’s wild attitude and emotions. While you may not like Parker at first, I think it would be really hard to be indifferent to what she’s going through.
In the end, Cracked up to be was a very memorable read by a fantastic author. Summer’s new book, Some Girls Are, is now out on the shelves and I’ll be getting my copy as soon as I stop by the bookstore! (probably this afternoon!)