Cracked Up to Be by Courtney Summers
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
When "Perfect" Parker Fadley starts drinking at school and failing her classes, all of St. Peter's High goes on alert. How has the cheerleading captain, girlfriend of the most popular guy in school, consummate teacher's pet, and future valedictorian fallen so far from grace?
Parker doesn't want to talk about it. She'd just like to be left alone, to disappear, to be ignored. But her parents have placed her on suicide watch and her conselors are demanding the truth. Worse, there's a nice guy falling in love with her and he's making her feel things again when she'd really rather not be feeling anything at all.
Nobody would have guessed she'd turn out like this. But nobody knows the truth.
Something horrible has happened, and it just might be her fault.
I was so impressed by Courtney Summers YA zombie release, THIS IS NOT A TEST, that I decided to back-track and get all of her books, starting from the beginning.
And CRACKED UP TO BE? Yeah, this one did not disappoint.
The MC Parker Fadley is insanely well written, from her anxiety-ridden finger snapping, to her issues with alcohol. The moment she stepped on the page, I knew I'd love this character.
And the supporting cast, well, they rounded out the story perfectly. The annoying wannabe Becky, so desperate to take over the pedestal of popularity that Parker has gladly jumped from. Her ex, Chris, who's still madly in love with her and quite possibly will never stop feeling that way, regardless of who else he's with. And of course, Jake - the new boy at school - who has absolutely no idea what he's just stepped into, but doesn't seem to care. Even the relationship with Bailey, Parker's newly adopted dog, played a pivotal role throughout the story - one I'll admit, I may even have shed a tear or two over.
Courtney Summers has a knack for voice, making you feel every word you're reading - and all while moving you along quickly. Each character had a reason for being there. And I loved how she injected flash-backs all along the way, which in the end, wove together and told the whole truth about what really happened.
CRACKED UP TO BE was definitely on the darker side of YA, tackling several tough subjects from start to finish. It was well written and oh-so spot on. And I loved it.
This is a definite must read if you're looking for the honest truth about some of the things that really happen in high school. I'm a fan, Ms. Summers, without a doubt.
View all my reviews