Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Book Review: The Reece Malcolm List, by Amy Spalding @theames

I was totally surprised by The Reece Malcolm List, and in a very good way!

When you read that a book is about a teen who has to move from everything she knows and live with a parent she's never even met, well, you just expect certain things. She's not going to fit in at her new school. There might be one nerdy person she becomes friends with, but everyone else will want nothing to do with her. This new parent, a mother in this case, is going to be awful, and she and her daughter are not going to get along. The mother's boyfriend is going to be a creep.

Well. That's NOT what happened at all in The Reece Malcolm List. Devan, our main character, doesn't immediately hit it off with her mom, but her mom is really nice, and although hard to communicate with, she's not awful. Brad, the boyfriend, is even better, and tries to be a confidante for Devan. Also, her mom is a famous author, and has friends that are a little famous too, so that adds an interesting aspect.

The new school, a performing arts school that Devan is very excited about, is really great. Devan makes a lot of friends, and is even involved in some romance. I just really enjoyed that Devan was basically happy. At least more happy than she was living with her dad, who ignored her, and her step mother, who hated her. Things aren't perfect though, and that's what The Reece Malcolm List is about. Devan trying to find her place in this new world.

Devan eventually has to confront her mother about why she basically kept out of Devan's life until she was forced to take her. There are a lot of misunderstandings along the way, which I found frustrating, but probably were mostly realistic, given that Devan is sixteen and behaving like a teen.

She also has to figure out some relationship stuff -- with her friends as well as her boyfriend(s), and this is where she really grows and changes and it was very sweet, for the most part.

The whole musical theater aspect was very entertaining, although I've never seen Merrily We Roll Along, I can relate to belting out show tunes when you are alone in the house (don't tell anyone.)

After reading some heavy, dark books, The Reece Malcolm List was just what I needed. A lighthearted, but really NOT cliche book about teen relationships. I really enjoyed this one, and I need to start pushing it to some of my teens.

Published by Entangled Teen, 2013
Copy obtained from the library
305 pages (qualifies for my Books You Can Read in a Day Challenge!)

Rating: 4/5

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