Author: Marni Bates
Series: Awkward, #3
Expected publication: October 29, 2013
I take no prisoners…
I'm Chelsea Halloway and I will happily destroy your social life if you mess with me. Just ask anyone. There is no situation I can't handle. Divorcing parents? No problem. An ex-boyfriend who wants to date Smith High School's biggest geek instead of me? Just a matter of time before I can make him see reason. At least, until my parents decide to ship me off on a study abroad trip to Cambodia…
Now instead of being admired as the queen of the Notables, I'm stuck with a bunch of college students who don't take me seriously, and a professor who accidentally landed himself on the wrong side of a drug lord. And it's up to me to get us all out of the country alive--even the annoying jerk with the green eyes who won't stop calling me "princess."
Oh yeah, what could possibly go wrong?
*a copy was provided through NetGalley for review purposes*
I have heard so many amazing things about Notable which is part of why I wanted to read it. And the premise makes for a promising read as well so I was very excited when my request to read it through NetGalley was accepted. I wanted to love it, really I did. I kept an open mind throughout the whole thing but for some reason it just didn't wow me like it did so many others. Sure it was a good read and I enjoyed it, but it wasn't what I was expecting and that was probably the downfall of it for me.
Chelsea Halloway is the Queen bee of her high school. She can ruin your life with just a glance and she proudly flaunts that little fact to anyone who dares to oppose her. She's spoiled, she's bratty, and she's not afraid to hurt someones feelings. She's basically a witch with a "b". And that's probably one of my biggest problems with Notable. I couldn't connect with her AT ALL. She's one of those girls that will do whatever it takes to get what she wants no matter whose toes she has to step on or how messed up it is. She's high maintenance and shows it. Sure she had some issues with her ex-boyfriends and her parents who were constantly arguing over her and didn't listen to what she was saying: one coddled her and the other talked down to her, treating her like she's worthless and will never get anywhere in life. That in itself can really mess with a persons mind causing them to be self-destructive, but the fact that Chelsea was just rude and mean to people most of the time really bothered me. I had a huge problem with Chelsea's parents. Her dad was okay but her mom was just a bitch, which is probably where Chelsea got a lot of her attitude from. She took the things her mother said to her to heart and really believed that she was worthless and stupid, only a pretty face. Even when Chelsea tried to talk to her mom about it she refused to listen. I know that family situations can't be all rainbows and butterflies but the way her mom treated her really bothered me and I just didn't like it at all. Luckily, Chelsea grew a bit of a backbone by the end of the book which made me like her a little more at the end of the book than I did at the beginning.
The story itself was interesting enough: set in Cambodia where Chelsea is forced to study abroad with her father's colleague Neal and teacher's assistant Houston, among a few other colorful characters. They soon find themselves accidentally mixed up with the drug cartel and on the wrong side of it because of a little hotel room mix up and suddenly they're running for their lives trying to find a way to fix it before they all end up dead. Unfortunately there wasn't a whole lot of action during this time. They mainly hid out in a hotel and did research through a computer with Chelsea continuously trying to take matters into her own hands and messing up most of the time. I just felt like they were going about the situation entirely wrong.
My favorite part about this whole story was the budding relationship of Chelsea and Houston who throughout the entire trip refused to acknowledge any kind of likeness toward the other. They bickered most of the time, though some of it was playful and endearing. The kind moments between them was few and far between however. I had hoped to see a little more romance.
While I didn't love Notable, it is still a decent read and there are several lines that I quoted because I thought they were funny and interesting. I'm not really sure why I didn't enjoy this one as much as I would have liked to but several people have loved it so if this review has turned you away from it, I would suggest reading it for yourself. You may find that you love it too.
I rate this book:
About Marni Bates
My autobiography MARNI (part of HCI's Louder Than Words series) was on the New York Public Library Stuff for the Teen Age 2010 List. I then signed a four book contract with KTeen. My first YA novel, AWKWARD, has been optioned by the Disney Channel as a made-for-TV movie and translated into Portuguese, Spanish, and Hungarian.
In my free time I can be found reading romance novels, rollerblading, singing really loudly (and off-key) in public and watching copious amounts of television--strictly for artistic inspiration, of course.