Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Where I Belong by Gwendolyn Heasley

Publisher: HarperTeen
Published: February 8, 2011
Pages: 304
Stars: 4/5
Meet Corrinne. She's living every girl's dream in New York City—shopping sprees at Barneys, open access to the best clubs and parties, and her own horse at the country club. Her perfect life is perfectly on track. At least it was. . . .

When Corrinne's father is laid off, her world suddenly falls apart. Instead of heading to boarding school, she's stripped of her credit cards and shipped off to the boonies of Texas to live with her grandparents. On her own in a big public school and forced to take a job shoveling manure, Corrinne is determined to get back to the life she's supposed to be living. She doesn't care who she stomps on in the process. But when Corrinne makes an unlikely friend and discovers a total hottie at work, she begins to wonder if her life B.R.—before the recession—was as perfect as it seemed. [Book Description from Amazon]

My review:
This was a really good read. It wasn’t fantastic or fast paced and it doesn’t leave you breathless, but it was one of those nice reads that you pick up during the summer and actually enjoy. Like, without having a heart attack as you near the climax. I was actually pretty surprised I like this one as much as I did. Contemporary fiction is not really my cup of tea, but the theme of the book really intrigued me (big city girl is forced to leave the glamorous life she’s used to and move to some remote town where people have never heard of Vera Wang *gasp!*). I’ve always thought it would be fun to write a novel with that same sort of theme. And while Where I Belong wasn’t exactly what I expected as far as romance goes, it was very entertaining. 

I’m going to be honest. I hated, hated, hated Corrinne for the first couple of chapters. She was, simply put, a jerk. Selfish. Heartless. And completely and utterly addicted to shopping (which isn’t a sin, mind you, but Corrinne was on the “I need rehab” level of obsessive shopping disorder).  I loved seeing how she changed, though, once she left New York and came to Texas. That leads me to another thing: some of the…um, practices… in Texas were kind of unbelievable. I mean, I’ve never been to rural Texas, so I can’t honestly say that people don’t…um…relieve their bladder in the woods, but it just seemed a little farfetched to me. That little detail shouldn’t stop you from reading the book, though (unless you’re Texan…then you might be a little offended, but you make the call). J

One more thing: Bubby? Really? Couldn’t we have come up with even a slightly more flattering name for the guy she ends up falling for? ßSpoiler, by the way. *dry grin* All in all, Where I Belong was a nice, slow read that didn’t have me sitting at the edge of my chair in suspense, but was entertaining in a different way. I recommend you save this one for the summer or a beach trip- it’ll prove to keep you entertained the whole time you’re reading it.

Quick Content Review:

Language- Minor (maybe one or two words- I don’t remember an awful lot of profanity)

Violence- None

Sexual- Minor (One kiss. Also, some mentions and insinuations of boys slipping Corrinne “the pill” at clubs.)

Other: “Manhattan Corrinne” is quite disrespectful to her mother and her father and her brother and….well, anyone who doesn’t let her get her way. Also, she frequents clubs either with a fake ID or “when they don’t card,” as she put it. Underage drinking ensues. Nothing is too, too horrible, but I thought I would mention those things just in case.   

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