My rating: 4 of 5 stars
For a contemporary book, this was pretty long. But I definitely wasn’t bored and I definitely didn’t feel like there were filler scenes or pointless chapters. Everything that happened needed to happen.
Chloe, for me, is probably one of the most infuriating characters I’ve come across in a long time. Seriously. I know, for the purpose of the book, she’s supposed to learn some hard life lessons. But my gosh is she the most self centred person on the planet. She’s the baby of her family, so she’s used to getting all the attention. She thinks of herself as a people person, but really, she’s a Chloe person. Which means she does things for people only if she gets a gain out of it, or if she feels bad about not doing it. And by gain, I mean because she wants to get to know someone better out of a crush, or because she wants to feel assured or like she belongs.
I mean, I could go on forever about how bad of a character Chloe is. She doesn’t have one redeeming quality, actually, that’s a lie. She never gives up. Even when she should. I suppose I liked that when her friends turned their backs on her, she didn’t melt into her shell and cry for days about it. She tried to fix it. She tried to talk to them and find out what had happened. But her motivations behind it were all wrong, and then she found other friends and pretty much forgot about her old friends who she claims to have been there for their whole friendship.
The novel is written in first person, which means it’s a whole book in Chloe’s head. A lot of the narrative is long winded and focuses too much on Chloe and what she thinks and feels about everything. Which only adds to how self centred she is as a character. Coriell did a great job in making Chloe realistic of someone in her situation and position. I didn’t once doubt she could really be that way. I did find myself skimming over some of Chloe’s monologue, though.
The description and the characters were all done exceptionally well. I can’t fault that. The writing was quirky, and things were given cute nicknames to help us remember. Chloe’s fascination with vintage shoes was a nice little add on. I had fun picturing the shoes described. I also very much enjoyed the developing romance between Chloe and Duncan and found myself wanting them to just kiss already! Always a good sign.
Best parts of the novel were the radio show scenes. And anywhere that Chloe had to face up to the real world and realise she had to start thinking about other people for once. I mean, the girl named her radio show ‘Chloe, Queen of the Universe!’ Fitting. Very fitting. But you know what? I wanted her to make up with her friends. I wanted the radio show to be a hit. And I wanted her to get with Duncan and her Grams to be okay. So she wasn’t a horrific character if I wanted nice things for her, I suppose.
For the record, I LOVE the cover. Very quirky. I know some people have issues with it, but it fits the book perfectly.
All in all, a great, well developed read. The pacing was great. It was a realistically written teen novel. It dealt with life lessons I know a lot of people Chloe’s age need to learn. And I wasn’t bored once. A little on the long side, but definitely worth it for great characters. 4 stars.