04 April 2015
Review: My Best Everything
My Best Everything by Sarah Tomp
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
So this is basically Breaking Bad for teens, right?
Lulu lives in rural Virginia in what is a stereotypical hick town. People don't generally leave, and it's not the most wealthy town in the state. And the locals love their moonshine. Abby, however, is going to get out of there and go to school in California, her father has some money set aside...and then he doesn't. Her dreams of leaving shattered, she comes up with an audacious plan when an old still arrives at the junkyard she works at - make her own moonshine, sell it, and get the money for college that way. Enlisting her boyfriend and some other outside help, this becomes a race to get out of town by any means necessary.
I don't know if I've ever read a YA book so soaked in booze before. It's a fun premise with not-so-fun stuff attached to it in a cultural setting that doesn't get a lot of serious play at all. The stakes actually feel high, and it's a question throughout whether things will work out. Things just feel realistic, which is good, and while the premise is funny, the story is pretty serious without being too heavy. There's something to be said about that.
Overall, a good read! As things progress, it does get a little draggy and the madcap parts don't always work, but it's a fast read on a whole and a pretty good experience with a topic I can't recall ever reading for this age group before.
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