Series: Pretenders #1
Published by Little Brown Books for Young Readers, Poppy on October 1st 2013
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Source: Publisher Amazon • Goodreads
It takes place at a high school in New Jersey. Summer is over. Sophomore year begins tomorrow. Outfits are being planned. Lunch buddies are being secured. Texts are flying. All seems normal when…ping! Everyone in the sophomore class gets an email.
SUBJECT: The Phoenix Five: License To Spill.
Attached is a mega document.
A letter from a mysterious student starts the book. It explains that at the end of each year the school yearbook- The Phoenix- names the five most outstanding freshman. She (or he) always suspected that last years’ five (3 girls, 2 boys) were phonies. She (or he) always thought they tried too hard to be popular. But she (or he) never had the proof. Until now. She (or he) stole the secret diaries they were asked to keep by their English teacher. She (or he) has compiled them into a book.
This is that book.
The story is told in journal style by five very different teenagers with different styles who are writing about the nitty gritty of their lives: struggles, temptations, worries, fears, joys-everything. What I liked about this book were the different characters-the jock, the princess, the skater, homeschoolers etc. It kept the book interesting, especially as you read their thoughts and feelings and then see how they are perceived by the masses based on their outward front and how they all interact with one another. We loved all the unexpected twists and turns the book took. I was a little afraid this book would be predictable and boring, but it is neither. This book is full of humor, intrigue and high school drama.
OK now for what I did not like. A couple of the characters were a little hard to get to know and to place inside the story. They seemed a little over the top for my taste. Also, the very weird and abrupt ending bothered me greatly. It’s like she passed her deadline and had to end the book right then and there. It left me going "Hu? What is that it?" Other than that one hiccup though, I thoroughly enjoyed the book as did my 14 year old daughter. We cannot wait for the follow-up!
Amazon Review: http://www.amazon.com/gp/pdp/profile/A38SAJ7T0I1UBN/ref=cm_cr_thx_pdp