Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Wrecked ~ Maria Padian (earc) review [@AlgonquinYR @mpadian]

Algonquin Young Readers
October 04, 2016
368 pages
add to Goodreads/buy from Book Depository/or Amazon

Everyone on campus has a different version of what happened that night.

Haley saw Jenny return from the party, shell-shocked.

Richard heard Jordan brag about the cute freshman he hooked up with.

When Jenny accuses Jordan of rape, Haley and Richard are pushed to opposite sides of the school’s investigation. Now conflicting versions of the story may make bringing the truth to light nearly impossible—especially when reputations, relationships, and whole futures are riding on the verdict.

Wrecked is a very relevant story that manages to not seem preachy, like a PSA or judgmental.  There is a variety of characters - including Haley who's always been the soccer star but may not be looking at a different future; Jenny, the premed, quiet, focused student; Richard, the math tutor; Carrie the super eco-conscious senior.  It works for providing different perspectives on the alleged assault but also money, relationships.

Most of the characters do have a 'name' the other characters call them, usually unbeknownst to them, and this felt unnecessary, if not a bit cliche. (Possibly because the names are all introduced in such close proximity to each other.) Though the monikers are used, the book doesn't rely on them and really does develop its characters beyond those first impressions or perceptions.

I liked that there were relationships beginning, ending, or otherwise developing parallel to the investigation. Everyone was involved, somehow, in the investigation so nothing was ever really separate from it but things did take place concurrently. Two characters in particular were pretty adorable which seemed like it should feel wrong next to something so not but it worked. The relationship was a nice bit of lightness in the story but had the weight that the investigation and why there was an investigation called for.

One other thing I liked was the way that the flashbacks/earlier timeline were included. Pieces of Jenny's night, that night, are at the end of each chapter and readers slowly get that story as they read Wrecked. It was interesting, as a reader, to be in the same place as the characters, having to choose what and who to believe without really knowing the truth.

review copy received via NetGalley, from publisher

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