Thursday, February 14, 2013

The Reece Malcolm List by Amy Spalding

The Reece Malcolm List
Good Reads Summary
The Reece Malcolm List by Amy Spalding

Things I know about Reece Malcolm:

1. She graduated from New York University.
2. She lives in or near Los Angeles.
3. Since her first novel was released, she’s been on the New York Times bestseller list every week.
4. She likes strong coffee and bourbon.
5. She’s my mother.

Devan knows very little about Reece Malcolm, until the day her father dies and she’s shipped off to live with the mother she’s never met. All she has is a list of notebook entries that doesn’t add up to much.

L.A. offers a whole new world to Devan—a performing arts school allows her to pursue her passion for show choir and musicals, a new circle of friends helps to draw her out of her shell, and an intriguing boy opens up possibilities for her first love.

But then the Reece Malcolm list gets a surprising new entry. Now that Devan is so close to having it all, can she handle the possibility of losing everything?

My Thoughts
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Mostly smart and cute but then sometimes not so smart and not so cute as well; I be contradictory yet again! Loving this comes as a surprise to me mostly because I didn’t know what to expect… what it does, however, is read funny, fast and almost always authentic. All that plus it leaves me smiling (smiling hard.)

I’ve been on GR some time now and come across one or two curious questions, one in particular has me wondering still. Given the popularity of YA with the adult reader right now would it be a fair assessment that more and more authors are throwing issues for the YA lead to deal with, issues that are likely beyond the scope of the intended YA reader to not connect with? I do get where the question is coming from, what with all those for seventeen-and-up’s being so common. Really now, I too want a youngish something or other with the rockin’ bod and locks to die for (growing up, all I had to pick from were guys unfamiliar with the concept of combing.) 

It seems a valid point as some scenarios people come up with feel more than unrealistic, yet there are other books too that have me hoping the next read will be like it (or be better than it even,) as those reads that hit everything just so. Those that contain emotion and experience and “real sounding” individuals with the people being people and more often people being screwed up people. Reece Malcolm falls under the second… and that’s precisely why enjoyed it.

Never mind the whole famous mother, separation and ‘woe is me’ sounding little orphan Annie that things could have been because this read so far from that. She read smart girl who knows who she is and what she could do… in certain respects at least, as there were moments too of her being unsure and insecure. I enjoyed that contrast. First take the girl who knows what she likes and how she stands apart and knows her strengths using the same to get where she wants to. (Smart, see?) Then factor in her in boy world/social world that had the ‘cute’ factoring in. Sure, I didn’t dislike her being so terrified almost all the time as being fearful of not saying the right thing and feeing as if she’d imposed on one all or any of them  felt like the things most likely to be true.. but the things she said, and the things others had me reading at a steady pace.

At the core of this is the whole family you’re born with vs. family you choose thing. At first, them together read awkward and new… as it should have. But, there’s progression there as well, with girl doing things she shouldn’t have, so that she (and we) learn more and more. Some not so nice things some other things that were. There’s a rightness in seeing that certain people are just people not larger than life so and so’s. There’s also a truthfulness in the feelings of mistrust and regret when it comes to others. She’s not all sunshine, for sure, but she’s not all sad all the time either. If there be one fly in this one, it’s that she’s chock full  of “like’s” and “seriously’s.” The girl did not let a sentence pass without using one of those.

Of course, there’s he with the rest of them, they read surprisingly believable…  that life for new kid need not be so hard (at least all the time) and that those hard times (if any) come from less dramatic sources than mean girl or hot boy! They all read normal… some ambitious, some overdramatic, some going through sadder things than she. Then all them together?  I could picture them.

This was so cute and though I would have typed, “..that I have no words” that’s not true at all.


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