YA Thriller, hardcover, 384 pages; Published July 7, 2015 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens; source: publisher
Can I put in a request for more books like this? Fast-paced and filled with plenty of action, intriguing characters, and strong dialogue make this an unputdownable read. With a hint of Scandal and a drop of House of Cards, The Fixer is just a lot of fun. With her grandfather sick and unable to run the ranch anymore, Tess is dragged to DC by her power-broker sister (a smart, dynamic fixer and a serious mover-and-shaker in the political realm). Tess is pissed. She wants to be back on the ranch, doing all the ranch-y things she loves. However, as sister of said fixer, Tess becomes a kind of go-to fixer for her classmates and winds up entangled in a murder and political scandal with high-reaching consequences. Tess is pretty strong-willed and finds out that she’s good at fixing things. It’s kind of a puzzle to her. Plus, she’s really loyal and has a strong dislike of bullies and unfairness so this newly-found skill comes in handy. Side note: not sure what the blurb is talking about when it mentions love triangles. There’s not one in this first installment. There’s a strong hint of romance but this story explores Tess and her sister’s relationship more than anything lurve-related. Maybe there’s one planned for later (though hopefully not). 4 1/2 stars.
YA Mystery/Thriller, hardcover, 375 pages; Published May 26, 2015 by Dutton Books for Young Readers; source: publisher
This wound up being kind of a tricky read for me. On one hand, I really appreciated the diabolicalness of Frances’s plan for revenge for her murdered parents and friend. She certainly dove into that plan headfirst and didn’t back down an inch. She played the antihero, the unlikeable girl, the hard-headed character to the hilt, even though she talked about her actions and why she did things a lot more than she showed that badassedness she claimed to have. On the other hand, I didn’t really understand how this girl who survived for seven days on a raft after witnessing the brutal murder of just about everyone onboard the ship she was on, could possibly fall for the boy who was a part of the cover-up of said hijacking and murder. Though this was a middle-of-the-road read for me, I’m sure that fans of Revenge will enjoy the twists and turns in this story. Another book for the classroom bookshelf! 3 stars.
YA Thriller, hardcover, 256 pages; Published June 2nd 2015 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens; source: publisher
In the mood for a creepy thriller? Then put this one on your list. If I’d read this as a teen, I would never have gone anywhere in cars with cute boys I didn’t know (which would have made my mother happy, I’m sure). There’s a slow build of tension and trouble throughout this story, just hints and whispers at first but they get louder as Cadie travels farther off her beaten path with the two cousins (fyi: no triangle). (Um, jumping into a car and heading out on a road trip with two boys you just met the night before is NOT a good plan. Yeah, everyone needs a bit of rebellion but let’s not be stupid about it!) Doller really knows how to spin a well-plotted yarn, that’s for sure. I liked how it started out and it all seemed like innocent fun. I mean, who doesn’t love a road trip? And then it takes a turn. A highly enjoyable story with a strong, smart main character (even if she did make a rather poor choice of travel companions). 4 stars.
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