Sunday, April 21, 2019

Review: Pasadena by Sherri L. Smith

PasadenaTitle:  Pasadena 
Author:  Sherri L. Smith
Publisher: G.P. Putnam's Sons Books For Young Readers
Publishing Date:  September 13th, 2016
Pages: 240
Genre: YA Mystery
Series:  Stand Alone
Source:  Audio

Bad things happen everywhere. Even in the land of sun and roses.

When Jude’s best friend is found dead in a swimming pool, her family calls it an accident. Her friends call it suicide. But Jude calls it what it is: murder. And someone has to pay.

Now everyone is a suspect—family and friends alike. And Jude is digging up the past like bones from a shallow grave. Anything to get closer to the truth. But that’s the thing about secrets. Once they start turning up, nothing is sacred. And Jude’s got a few skeletons of her own.

This book was complicated for me. I am not sure where I stand, whether I really liked it or if I didn't like it very much. At times I loved where it was going but there were times.. I just couldn't grab onto it. So mixed feelings. 

Jude has been best friends with Maggie Kim for a very long time. They have grown up together and now Maggie is gone. She has done the unthinkable and has ended her own life. Jude can't wrap her mind around Maggie doing such a thing and set off on a mission to prove that Maggie was murdered. 

Okay, so like I said I have mixed feelings about this book. On one had the story was pretty great. The story was great. I really enjoyed where the book took me. I feel it was a mystery that was closer to what life really is. Messy and complicated and things aren't always as they seem or simple in life. 

The mystery was well done and written well. This was the kind of mystery that I just fell into. I didn't try to figure it out I just went with the flow to see where it took me. I was very intrigued with the lives of the characters and to learn a bit more about each of them as the story progressed. 

I really liked the fact that what Jude thought or remembered about her life and her friends' lives weren't what they really were. There were layers to each person, each home life. There were layers in the story. 

This was all good. I loved the story and the mystery. 

The things I didn't feel. 

The romance. There was romance but I just couldn't feel it. I could have done without it at all in this story. I don't believe that every story needs romance. I felt this story was more about Jude and Maggie, their friendship, and they way their lives had rose colored glasses.... the mystery of it all. I feel the romance was just kind of put in at the last moment to check mark a box. It didn't fit. 

Jude. I didn't dislike her or like her. I was just meh. I enjoyed her story and the way she unraveled the mess around her. But as a person. I don't know. She was kind of flat for me in a world of 3D layers. I liked all the secondary characters so much more. They felt more multi dimensional. Jude didnt' really seem to grow. She wasn't effected by the truth of it all as much as I feel she should of been... or at least I didn't get the feel for that. 

The ending was good and I enjoyed it and I felt it was right for the story but I think I felt a little let down. I think this was more my issue than the book's issue. but I felt it was anti-climatic. I think if Jude would have shown more emotional for it all... maybe I could  have really enjoyed the ending. 

So see mixed feelings. The book is worth the read for the story and the mystery.. not so much for the characters. 

Mixed feelings. The book is worth the read for the story and the mystery.. not so much for the characters.

Sherri L. Smith

Sherri L. Smith is the award-winning author of YA novels LUCY THE GIANT, SPARROW, HOT SOUR SALTY SWEET, FLYGIRL and ORLEANS. In October 2015, she makes her middle grade debut with THE TOYMAKER’S APPRENTICE from G.P. Putnam and Sons for Penguin Random House.

Sherri has worked in film, animation, comic books and construction. Her books have been listed as Amelia Bloomer, American Library Association Best Books for Young People, and Junior Library Guild Selections. FLYGIRL was the 2009 California Book Awards Gold Medalist.

She loves her family, travel, chocolate chip cookies, reading, and and a really good cup of tea.

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