First chapter sets the stage for a delicious romance: hotel heiress with a rebellious streak (Paris Hilton, are you there?) meets teen vampire movie heartthrob (Edward? Bella?) on the way to Ireland–and soon discovers they’re both stuck in the same B and B. Imagine that.
As the story unfolds, I’m positively transported to the 90s reading Sweet Valley High and Sweet Dreams, trading books with friends, and swooning over tender, squeaky-clean romances.
But this book promises something deeper than puppy love as Finley grapples with grief over her brother’s untimely death and launches on a mission to discover what he loved so much about Ireland.
The only part that’s so poorly researched I just can’t buy it, is Finley’s music audition to the New York Conservatory. She plays the violin but took up piano so she can be a composer; she has an unfinished composition, which she must finish in time for her audition, because it’s her, of course, audition piece.
The author must have googled this whole music bit once and snapped up the first buzz words she could. Finley’s musical aspirations are as silly as those movies with musical prodigies played by badly faking actors.
First: if you’re a violinist, you can compose for the violin without having to learn piano. In fact if you’re serious about the violin, taking up piano will just be time away from your violin practice (unless you’re a prodigy, which Finley clearly isn’t).
Second: if I’m not mistaken, a music audition will require you to show proficiency. You might play your composition as part of it, but I’m pretty sure it wouldn’t be the only requirement. So I don’t really see the big fuss over Finley’s composition as if her whole musical future depended on it.
And if you’re really serious about it, you might reconsider the New York Conservatory–a quick click to their website shows their forte is theater.
I think the book could do without the whole music bit, just seems pretentious; but who am I to say? Jenny B. Jones tells the story well enough and moves the romance along easily. I’d recommend this to young readers: get a Gossip Girl read without the trash, and instead, a hefty dose of real-life inspiration.