Book Reviews & Other Musings
Summary: Addy Hanlon has always been Beth Cassidy’s best friend and trusted lieutenant. Beth calls the shots and Addy carries them out, a long-established order of things that has brought them to the pinnacle of their high-school careers. Now they’re seniors who rule the intensely competitive cheer squad, feared and followed by the other girls—until the young new coach arrives. Cool and commanding, an emissary from the adult world just beyond their reach, Coach Colette French draws Addy and the other cheerleaders into her life. Only Beth, unsettled by the new regime, remains outside Coach’s golden circle, waging a subtle but vicious campaign to regain her position as “top girl”—both with the team and with Addy herself. Then a suicide focuses a police investigation on Coach and her squad. After the first wave of shock and grief, Addy tries to uncover the truth behind the death—and learns that the boundary between loyalty and love can be dangerous terrain.
This book didn’t really do it for me. There were many references to cheerleading stunts and other things that I didn’t understand, and I found myself YouTube-ing quite a bit to figure out what the author was talking about. When she wasn’t talking about cheerleading, I liked the book, but that was one of the main things that it was about so it was hard to get around. Also, there were too many similes and metaphors. Some times it was right…most of the time it was wrong. And the lack of dialogue—I didn’t get that. There were many instances where the man character Addy would think to herself “and then I asked her, and she told me this.” Why not just put the dialogue? It made it hard to understand the characters since you didn’t know how they were speaking. The assumed personalities of the characters were somewhat based on the biased opinion of the main character. All of these things made me a little sad since Megan Abbott isn’t a bad writer. I mean, there were some parts of her writing that I really loved. I also found myself loving the character of Beth Cassidy. I think she would have made a better narrator. But opinions, opinions… I may read this book again in the future to try to get a better handle on it, but it will most likely be a long while.