Friday, January 21, 2011

Book Review: Rival by Sara Bennett Wealer

Kathryn and Brooke are both amazing singers and are motivated to win an annual music competition that offers scholarship money. Though they used to be friends, they are now bitter rivals. Told from both the point of alto Brooke and soprano Kathryn, the novel makes us root for both. But only one can win. Who will it be?


RIVAL is an engaging look at the reasons friends become enemies and how bad blood sours other aspects of their lives. Though I initially had more sympathy for Kathryn, Brooke grew on me. Her characterization as the queen bee who doesn’t care about the popularity game felt unique and fresh, even if her daddy issues were fairly standard YA material. Kathryn can also be pretty clueless, especially when it comes to her one friend. The poor guy let her totally treat him like a doormat. Do unto others, Kathryn, do unto others…

Debut Author Sara Bennett Wealer keeps the tension and stakes high, resulting in a quick, satisfying read and a nail-biter of a final showdown.

RIVAL comes out in hardcover on February 15, 2011. Find out more about it at the author’s website.

Fun fact:  Sara is a fellow Kansan - and she went to KU.  Go Jayhawks!

18 comments:

Staci said...

This one sounds good. There seems to be a lot of great YA out there lately!

Caroline Starr Rose said...

Go, Sara!

Mrs. DeRaps said...

I can't wait to read this one...It's on its way in the mail. Thanks for the review.

Pam (@iwriteinbooks) said...

This looks like a lot of fun! Love the cover, too...

bermudaonion said...

This sounds like a good one and I love the cover too.

Sara said...

Hey there, to a fellow Kansas girl! Thanks so much for the great review! I'm thrilled you liked RIVAL! Rock Chalk, Jayhawk and all that! :-)

Beth S. said...

I'm really looking forward to this one!

Cass (Words on Paper) said...

:D Nice review.

Can't wait to read this! Sara already knows. ;)

Dazzling Mage said...

I really want to read this! Thanks for the short review. =)

Carla said...

I totally agree. I LOVED this book and it was all thanks to YOU. Lenore, I see lots of baileys and cocktail drinking in our future :)

kay - Infinite Shelf said...

Oh, it sounds good! I'm always in for a new take on the queen bee, and it's always engaging to follow two different characters.

A Backwards Story said...

Gorgeous cover! And this one sounds really interesting :)

Zibilee said...

I haven't ever really read a book about friends who become enemies, but I know that I have had a few! I think the book sounds great and I bet it's one that I would like. I am glad you enjoyed it!

Katie said...

This sounds great! I love the idea of a queen bee who doesn't care about popularity. Thanks for the recommendation!

Jamie said...

This looks really interesting! I've never heard of it before but I can't wait to read it! I'm digging the cover too!

Shelley said...

At least it's girls competing for a scholarship instead of for a boy! Betty and Veronica could learn a lesson.

Jennifer said...

This sounds like an intriguing read. I enjoy a little competition every now and then. And the cover is totally gorgeous.

Vivien said...

I was able to get an ARC of this copy. Enjoyed it as well. I'm also a fellow Kansan :)