by E.A. Rigg
pub. Jan 1, 2012
It's three weeks into the school year when music junkie Casey Barnes gets a second chance with her mysterious, heartbreaking ex-boyfriend. She comes up with a plan to win him back, but it soon spins out of control as rivalries, revelations about him, and music itself all start to collide. For Casey the newfound attention means learning the difference between wanting center stage and actually being on it.
My first thought upon starting Casey's story was a horrified "Oh no! Not another high school book!" And, let's get this out of the way, Rigg's writing is a little rough at times. Now, don't take that the wrong way - I thought Alice Sebold's The Lovely Bones was an unorganized wreck (and look how popular that book was!), and Rigg's is much smoother than Sebold! Some of the transitions needed a little work and referencing that something had happened earlier, but moving on with the timeline only to jump back to the previous ocurrence later, felt a little ameteurish/rough-draft to me.
But, let's move on to the story itself! Because, once I got started, I really did get sucked in. I loved the main character Casey! She felt so real to me - sassy, rebellious (sometimes just for the sake of being rebellious), good-hearted, and never answering a sincere moment with anything but sarcasm. Her relationship to her brother Yulle was the perfect love/hate (though Casey believes it's all hate) sibling interaction. The way the characters acted and spoke all felt so grounded in reality - I loved it. I found myself mentally yelling at Casey to stop being so purposefully oblivious!
Though the language (several *F* words) was, I felt, needlessly gratuitous, there were many things handled with skill - especially the make-out/groping sessions. These could have turned into semi-porn, but Riggs skillfully gets all necessary info across in a sentence or two without it turning into a Harlequin in the least! The "love" stories never feel maudlin, but contemporary, and I loved that.
Thank-you to E.A. Riggs for graciously sending us a hard copy (since I'm the last person without a Kimble/Nook)!
Overall, I'd give it 3/5 stars