Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Cracked Up to Be by Courtney Summers


Title: Cracked Up to Be
Author: Courtney Summers
Summary (from Amazon):
Parker Fadley has it all-head cheerleader, honor roll student, Winter Ball Queen, perfect boyfriend, Chris. Then at a wild "school's out" party, she catches her friend Jessica's boyfriend kissing another girl and tells Jessica, who retaliates by hooking up with an older guy who crashed the party. The next day Jessica is missing, and Parker, suspecting that she could have done something to help her, nosedives into a downward spiral, drinking heavily, and attempting suicide in a motel room. All of this is revealed in flashback as Parker begins her senior year at her Catholic high school. She cuts class, goes to school drunk, ignores assignments, and goes out of her way to make everyone leave her alone. New guy Jake, intrigued by her self-destructive determination to be ostracized, persists in trying to get inside her head. The problem is that what's inside Parker's head is a fear she can't even admit to herself—that she knows what happened to Jessica and could have stopped it. Summers creates a gritty world of teenagers living on the edge, complete with explosive interactions and rocky relationships without getting mired in angst. Parker narrates the story, darkly fascinating in her turmoil as she slowly lets herself remember details from the drunken night of Jessica's disappearance. In her relationships with Jake, Chris, archrival Becky, her parents, and even her dog, Parker struggles with self-revulsion and a desperate need for love and acceptance.


Oh. My. God. Times twenty frickin' million. This was the most emotional book I've ever read. I bought this book from Amazon because the summary really made me want to read it. So, I had enough money left on my Amazon gift card and I bought it. A few days later, it arrived and I was excited to read it.

When you start reading the book, you keep reading about Parker mentioning something that happened. Which, of course, made my mind wander to "what the hell happened?"

Then, as you get deeper in the book, Parker starts talking about her old life before she basically hit rock bottom. She was popular, head cheerleader, dating the most popular guy in school... but she was also a bitch. Still is. After she sees her friend Jessie getting raped and drug off into the woods at a party, she completely shuts down. She blames herself, she goes to school drunk, she does drugs, she makes suicide threats... she does everything she can to distance herself from her old friends. And it works. She hands over the captaincy to Becky, her old friend and current Queen Bee. She doesn't speak to her old friends. The only one she lets in a bit is Chris, her ex boyfriend. Except, even then, she's still a sarcastic bitch to him.

Then, in walks Jake the new kid. He's very interested in Parker for some reason. He's everywhere, asking her questions, trying to dig a little deeper... and even making her feel feelings that she hasn't felt in a long time. I liked Jake. He was a good character.

More things happen between Jake and Parker. Parker's life starts changing piece by piece.

Of course, I'm not telling the ending. What kind of person would I be if I told you? ;-)

Rating: 5/5 stars. It deserves, like, a million to be honest.



  1. I'm hearing that this Courtney is an amazing author. I'll have to pick up her books :)


  2. I loveeeedddd this book...have you read her new one? :)

  3. Great review!

    I lovelovelove this book so much, Parker is just so wonderfully snarky and the writing is top-rate :)



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