Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.
Blurb (from Goodreads):
The good girl, the bad boy, the diva, the hustler, the rock star, and the nerd. Six teens legally liberated from parental control for six different reasons, all with one thing in common: something to hide.
Now they’re sharing a house in Venice Beach, acting like a family, and living their lies. No parents. No limits. No alibis. One witnessed a crime, another might be a murderer—and one’s been spying on them all.
As they cling to a fantasy of freedom and slowly let down their guards, the past creeps up on them. And when one of them gets arrested, everyone’s carefully constructed facade comes crumbling down.
In this steamy, drama-filled series, relationships are tested and secrets revealed as lies threaten to destroy their perfect setup.
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.)
“You just won the jackpot, little brother. They’re gonna emancipate your ass.”
This was a YA contemporary story, about 6 legally emancipated teens living together in a house on Venice Beach.
The first thing I’d like to say is why are there only 5 people on the cover? This book has 6 main characters!
Anyway, I did have problems at first keeping track of each of these kids, but I did get it straight eventually.
Grace and Candace are step-sisters, who have moved to LA because of Candace’s acting career. The house they’re staying in is owned by Candace’s biological mother, and Grace’s mother is having to pay rent for Grace to live there as well! Grace is quite a quiet girl, and the only thing we really know about her is that she has a pen-pal who is on death row. Candace was emancipated so that she could go to LA without her step-mother tagging along, and I think Grace was just along for the adventure.
“You and me, emancipated minors?”
Grace nodded. “Heck yeah.”
John-Michael is legally emancipated because his father has just died. There are some questions over the way his father died though. Did John-Michael have anything to do with it?
“You don’t have to worry about me anymore.”
Paolo is the 24th best tennis player in the US, and has been emancipated because his family are moving to somewhere remote for 2 years for this father’s job. He wanted to stay and carry on with his tennis, so they emancipated him.
Lucy is in a rock band, and likes to smoke weed. Her parent’s have had enough after catching her and her friends misbehaving one too many times, and she is now also emancipated.
“My sister blotted her copybook somethin’ awful and Mr and Mrs Long did not take it well.”
Maya has been emancipated because her father had a problem with his green-card, and he and her mother have had to leave the country whilst it is sorted out. What is Maya hiding though?
“Maya’s dad ran into trouble with his papers. Her mom left with him while the problem gets cleared up.”
The storyline in this switched between the six kids – Paolo getting into trouble by making bets when he can’t pay up, John-Michael having to deal with the speculation that he might have murdered his father, Candace getting some acting opportunities, Grace mainly writing letters to some guy on death row, Lucy trying to join a new band, and Maya hiding a secret from everyone. Each of these storylines was okay, but there was nothing really exciting going on, other than the storyline that someone was spying on the kids, and there was a question over whether one of them had witnessed a murder – not that we got very far with this storyline at all.
“I think I wish I’d never been Charlie. ‘Charlie’ saw a man drowned.”
There was a little bit of romance, but not a lot, and what there was wasn’t really anything to sink your teeth into.
The ending to this left us with a bit of a cliff-hanger which I wasn’t expecting. I had assumed that this was a stand-alone, but the ending left me thinking that there would be at least one more book to tie things up.
Overall; this was an interesting story, but the pace was a little slow, and I didn’t feel that all that much happened. This to me felt like it was just the start of something, and that his whole book was just setting the scene for whatever comes next. I think it will hinge on what actually happens in the next book as to whether this story is really worth reading or not. There wasn’t anything horribly wrong with this story, but there just didn’t seem to be much going on. That being said, I am interested to find out what happens next, because I’ve invested 400 pages in getting to know these kids now.
6.5 out of 10