Series: The Fixer #1
Publication Date: July 7, 2015
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's
Reading Level: Young Adult
Pages: 384 (ARC)
Source: From Publisher For Review
This thriller YA is Scandal meets Veronica Mars.
Sixteen-year-old Tess Kendrick has spent her entire life on her grandfather's ranch. But when her estranged sister Ivy uproots her to D.C., Tess is thrown into a world that revolves around politics and power. She also starts at Hardwicke Academy, the D.C. school for the children of the rich and powerful, where she unwittingly becomes a fixer for the high school set, fixing teens’ problems the way her sister fixes their parents’ problems.
And when a conspiracy surfaces that involves the family member of one of Tess's classmates, love triangles and unbelievable family secrets come to light and life gets even more interesting—and complicated—for Tess.
Perfect for fans of Pretty Little Liars and Heist Society, readers will be clamoring for this compelling teen drama with a political twist.
I was immediately curious about this book because I am obsessed with Veronica Mars. Literally anything that is said to compare to one of my favorite television shows ever will always be given a chance by me. And, boy, did I enjoy this one.
Tess Kendrick is snarky, smart, and super awesome, and that’s one of the reasons that it’s so easy to enjoy this book. She’s a problem solver and she thinks ten steps ahead of everyone else. Her life is literally the furthest thing from normal and while it’s easy for her peers to dislike her for her inability to not say her thoughts out loud, it’s even easier for readers to love her. The same goes for the group of friends she created at her new high school including Vivvie, the daughter of the president’s personal physician, her friend Asher, and his best friend Henry, the grandson of the head of the Supreme Court that died in the beginning of the book. I can’t wait to hear about more of their adventures in book two.
While the story features an all-star cast, the novel is definitely plot oriented. Fast paced and unputdownable, this is certainly a quick read. Barnes took the “boring” concept of a murder mystery and doubled the anxiety ten-fold by setting it in the world of politics, a high school where politics play out in real-time, and adding in a ton of intimidating shady characters. Not to mention a First Lady that is super sneaky and motherly all at once.
Tess’s family dynamic with her sister, Ivy, also known as the notorious political fixer and friend of the President also adds another really interesting aspect to this novel, making it all the more complex.
This is the perfect novel for fans looking for a fun read with high-anxiety tension and political intrigue. I do not watch Scandal, but from what I have heard I would say that this novel’s television comparisons hold up swimmingly. Lacking in romance in order to truly focus on this insanely twisty plot, this cast of characters is memorable and respectable while they toil through some of the most dramatic moments I’ve come across in a wild. The world of politics, man, it’s hard to stay afloat...literally and figuratively.
I’m looking forward to what other crazy out-of-the-box tales Barnes brings us next. While the ending wraps up smoothly, there’s a lot of potential for future books.
FTC Disclaimer: I received no compensation of any kind in exchange for my honest review.