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review 2017-05-31 19:00
Book Review: Grace and the Fever
Grace and the Fever - Zan Romanoff

Where to start? I knew this would be a great read as soon as I started it. Grace is a pretty typical teenager who happens to be obsessed with a boy band. As someone who once had N'Sync and Backstreet Boys posters all over my wall, I immediately related to her interests. Unlike her friends, Grace never outgrew her love of Fever Dream and it caused her to grow apart from them.

 

This coming of age story really covered a lot of relationship issues that young adults deal with and I really enjoyed getting to know Grace through all of them. While the main focus was on Grace's interactions with Jes and the band, reading about her navigation through her friendships was equally important. This book tackles some basic parenting/friendship issues but also goes through the online identity stress and of course, celebrity privacy issues. It sounds like a lot, but the story was well rounded and a very fun read.

 

There is so much going on with Grace as she meets her idols and subsequently gets pulled into their world, it was refreshing to feel the nervousness and trepidation she experienced. The author does a wonderful job of pulling you into the moment and running away with it. I didn't want to put the book down.

 

The celebrity lifestyle comes with a lack of privacy and a lot of its own subculture. Jes' character was realistic and full of surprises. His acknowledgement of his lack of "regular" experiences hit me right in the heart. Adolescence is such an important part of growing up and a rock start lifestyle definitely isn't a normal youth experience. I imagine most young stars would relate to those feelings.

 

I would highly recommend this book to YA readers, especially those who really enjoy a story about coming into your own skin and learning from some hard life lessons.

 

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review, I was not monetarily compensated and my opinions are my own*

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text 2016-12-30 07:21
Least favorite books of 2016
Kill the Boy Band - Goldy Moldavsky
Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children - Ransom Riggs

kill the boy band  3 stars  I wasn't  a fan  I  didn't  like the characters    

miss peregrines  3  stars  also  eh  just  wasn't  a fan not sure  I'm going to continue  

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review 2016-12-08 20:40
Kill the Boy Band, Goldy Moldavsky
Kill the Boy Band - Goldy Moldavsky

What an absolute riot this book was--when it wasn't breaking my heart.

 

If you've ever been a fan of anything (especially a teen girl fan) and participated in fandom, you will recognize these characters and some of their behavior. The lingo, the friendships borne of obsessing over the same band/show/books/whatever, the fanfic, the love-hate relationship between you and the object of your fannish devotion--Moldavsky captures it all in prose that made me laugh hard at least once a page.

 

The book is comic but blackly so. The protagonist (who goes unnamed, though she tells those who ask a variety of names from 80s movies) and her three fellow fans, including her pretty and popular best friend, "accidentally" kidnap the least popular member of fictional British boy band The Ruperts (all named, you guessed it, Rupert). Things quickly spiral out of control, and the protagonist, who's "the sensible one," struggles to get a grip on the situation and defy her friends, about whom she realizes some unsettling things. That's where the heartbreak comes in. She has recently lost her father, and her Ruperts obsession has clearly become her lifeline. By the end of the book she's doubting her own sanity.

 

The author represents fandom lovingly and fairly, including its downsides: using fandom as a crutch, feeding on fame as a fan rather than the object of your devotion, fandom's temporality--some day you won't care or will be embarrassed. As a fan myself, I can't say I was ever offended; I enjoyed the accurate portrayal and the nuances of fan interactions and feelings that the author captures so well. I love that she doesn't define every bit of fannish jargon (e.g. "stans/stanning"), though it's always clear from context. I love that each girl has her favorite Rupert and role as a fan in a group of fannish friends (the leader, the one with connections, the one with money and access), and that The Ruperts feel like a fully realized band and fandom, complete with a secretly gay member who's dating a girl as a beard. Social media plays a central role, but it's not overdone.

 

This book is fun and demented and worth a read even if you don't think of yourself as particularly fannish. Best of all, it doesn't put the girls down for being fans.

 

If nothing else, you will laugh hysterically at what's in Apple's suitcase...

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review 2016-10-31 23:51
Please excuse me while I fangirl...
Kill the Boy Band - Goldy Moldavsky

Goldy Moldavsky's debut novel Kill the Boy Band is a book for any girl that ever was a fangirl or ever will be a fangirl (so basically all of us). Or really, it is just a good book for anyone who understands crazy, passionate, slightly scary fandom love. But especially boy band love.

 

So it's pretty much what it sounds like based on the title. The book follows four friends all obsessed with the same band (The Ruperts, so named because all the boys are named Rupert) and they've decided they are taking matters into their own hands. They want and up close and personal look at the boys, and it is exactly what they get. But nowhere close tot he way they were imagining.

 

The narrator is super relatable, and she's also fairly self-aware. Which is a nice balance for the reader because then it's not just trying to cope with crazy fangirl screaming. And the story becomes not just about all these shenanigans these four teenage girls get into while trying to meet their favorite boy banders. It becomes a bit of a social commentary on the fandom life, in whatever shape it might take.

 

Being crazy about a boy band or a TV show or a book series to the point of total life consumption is not, itself, a bad thing. Especially when you're young and you kind of don't have a lot of other things to occupy your time with. But it is sometimes wise to have a voice of reason come in and remind you there are other things in life. In addition to making some good observations about fandom this book is also just a hilarious, ridiculous fun read.

 

~Ren

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review 2016-09-13 12:16
Kill The Boy Band
Kill the Boy Band - Goldy Moldavsky

5 Stars: Kill The Boy Band is quirky and rather dark look at celebrities and those fans that worship them. The four girls at the center of the adventure -- Sloane, Apple, Isabel and Erin -- are absolutely dazzling. Each has a moment to shine and they provide all the drama and subplots you'd want in an adventure as thrilling as this one. Goldy Moldavsky's debut novel is one of the strongest I've read in a longest time. Fans of dark comedies (Heathers, anyone?) should absolutely find a lot to love about this book! 

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