Title/Author: Golden by Jessi Kirby
Publisher/Date published: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, May 14th 2013
How I got this book: read it on PulseIt
Buy this book at: The Book Depository
Goodreads summary: Seventeen-year-old Parker Frost has never taken the road less traveled. Valedictorian and quintessential good girl, she’s about to graduate high school without ever having kissed her crush or broken the rules. So when fate drops a clue in her lap — one that might be the key to unraveling a town mystery — she decides to take a chance.
Julianna Farnetti and Shane Cruz are remembered as the golden couple of Summit Lakes High — perfect in every way, meant to be together forever. But Julianna’s journal tells a different story — one of doubts about Shane and a forbidden romance with an older, artistic guy. These are the secrets that were swept away with her the night that Shane’s jeep plunged into an icy river, leaving behind a grieving town and no bodies to bury.
Reading Julianna’s journal gives Parker the courage to start to really live — and it also gives her reasons to question what really happened the night of the accident. Armed with clues from the past, Parker enlists the help of her best friend, Kat, and Trevor, her longtime crush, to track down some leads. The mystery ends up taking Parker places that she never could have imagined. And she soon finds that taking the road less traveled makes all the difference.
Ok, so why has noone been SCREAMING at me to read this book??? Seriously??
I stumbled across this on PulseIt when I had nothing to do at work and was scouring the internet for something interesting. I hadn't really given this another glance when I'd heard of it around its release, so I went in with basically no expectations.
And HOLY WOWZA!! I really want to kick myself for not reading this sooner! It was SO, SO GOOD!
Jessi Kirby immediately drew me in with her extraordinary writing style and the characters that I could relate to so, so much! I love stories like this, finding out hidden stories within stories by reading a diary and doing some detective work!
Parker is awesome. And very uptight and in need of a good shove in the right direction every now and then. She's a smart cookie and I loved her drive and seriously, I WAS that girl who was afraid to break the rules back in high school. She was under a lot of pressure from her mother and though of course her mother loves her, at times it was hard to remember this.
I also really loved Parker's best friend Kat and the boy who wants to be more than a friend. Kat is a true best friend who wants what's best for Parker and supports her in everything. I loved her spirit and the bond between the girls!
Sometimes you just know when you make a decision that when you do, you can never turn back or take it back and Golden is about some of those decisions. It's in the decision Parker makes to open Juliana's diary, to go looking for the truth within those pages, to decide what she wants to do with her life and to take a chance on a boy she's known for a long time.
Juliana and Shane's story is both tragic and heartbreaking, but at the end it also filled me with hope. I loved how completely Jessi Kirby had me invested in this story with her engaging writing and amazingly loveable characters! They FELT real to me, as if I could just pass a cafe and find Parker and Kat there drinking a cup of coffee or tea and laughing together.
This book broke my heart and put it back together and is generally just a beautiful story that you should all put on your reading this this summer!
My rating: 5+ stars