Cracked Up to Be by Courtney Summers
First off, I have to admit that I almost abandoned this novel at around page 40. The main character, Parker Hadley, was just so mean, obnoxious and unlikable, that I had a hard time getting involved in the plot. She used to be the perfect student, all A’s, head cheerleader, hot boyfriend, and the most popular girl in school. Then something terrible happened about a year ago that changed everything. The reader learns about the incident in bits and pieces as different sounds and events trigger Parker to relive it over and over again. Not until the end of the book to we discover what happened that has turned Parker, who never used to drink at all, into a binge drinker who is the original Mean Girl to everyone at her private Catholic school.
When I finally began to see the tremendous pain Parker was in, I became involved with her story. It became a mystery that had me constantly trying to figure out what could have happened to change her so drastically. In addition to all this, there’s a slight romance with the new kid, named Jake, who can’t help being intrigued by her, despite all her attempts to push him away.
This book would be a great choice for readers who like high school drama, realistic fiction and mysteries.