Weekly dose of YA :)
Author: Sarah Alderson
Title: The Sound
Release date: 1st of August 2013
Published by: Simon & Schuster UK
Reading level: FICTION – JUVENILE: Contemporary, Suspense, YA
Pages: 320 in Kindle e-book format
Source: Bought from Amazon.com for Kindle
When aspiring music journalist Ren Kingston takes a job nannying for a wealthy family on the exclusive island of Nantucket, playground for Boston's elite, she's hoping for a low-key summer reading books and blogging about bands. Boys are firmly off the agenda.
What she doesn't count on is falling in with a bunch of party-loving private school kids who are hiding some dark secrets, falling (possibly) in love with the local bad boy, and falling out with a dangerous serial killer...
This was definitely an enjoyable contemporary suspense YA. I haven’t really read many of its kind, but I will be more likely to pick up one after reading this.
The story is about Ren, an English teenager coming to spend her summer in the US, surrounded by American rich families to be the nanny to their children. She also befriends a group of prep school kids and ordinary locals, the latter led by the oh so misunderstood and scrumptious bad boy Jesse. Which side would I choose? Well, it’s too obvious – Jesse wins, always, no competition what so ever. And then, someone starts killing nannies and other mayhem, dirty secrets and double crossing starts coming about. Luckily, there is Jesse to save my day and be the sunshine for me when reading.
This book had a bunch of pros suspense story wise: tension, mystery, close calls, figuring out the villain, action, fistfights, etc. It also excelled in romance: can I just say that Jesse was über swoon worthy? Well, he was also a nice guy, broody, but nice. He and Ren were quite realistic together and they had heaps of chemistry even before becoming a couple, plus, no insta love. But, despite that, the other love line I absolutely hated, because, let’s face it, love triangles are the bane of my YA reading existence and while I understood its necessity I wasn’t happy, not one bit.
Always a pro: this is a standalone, as much as I’d like to see Jesse again, it’s much more satisfying to have a decent end, not wait till things are stretched thin during the span of several years. This story worked well for a single book.
My main issue was that the story took a while to get going and to the point. The first half of the book was kind of slow and felt like a needlessly long delay, the second part, however, flew by due to the plot picking up and things starting to happen. So all in all, everything balanced out somewhat. Also, the villain and his reasoning kind of fell flat to me, but, luckily, the relationships Ren managed to form took center stage, so I wasn’t too hung up on that.
Ren was a decent and likable heroine, I wasn’t wild about her, but she didn’t do anything to make me absolutely dislike her either. She made mistakes, was obviously a bad judge of character (I forgive her though), was careless with her own safety, but, still, I liked her, she just came across authentic. I felt that she was being completely herself and that is something to respect, even though, I didn’t agree with several of her decisions and action.
Jesse – well, what haven’t I already said that doesn’t make him seem like anything less than the awesome, swoony, irresistible guy that he was? He was all that and more. There was just something not really charming (he was too broody for charming), but compelling about him that made him very attractive. He was also a nice guy underneath all that hostile misunderstood-ness and a really protective guy who would do anything for the people he cares about, including sacrificing himself. And if that aint awesome then I don’t know what is.
The suspense part was decent, but the people and relationships took center stage for this quite enjoyable contemporary YA. The heroine was relatable and nice, but the hero was beyond hunky, mysterious and such a fan girl’s dream guy. I recommend to all who’d like to get their hands on a quick, easy and readable contemporary YA (with a great hero to boot).