Review: Friday Night Alibi by Cassie Mae
Author: Cassie Mae
Published: July 29th 2013
Genre: NA Contemporary Romance
Source: eARC provided by publisher via Netgalley for honest review
I hate giving low rated reviews, but I hope this is more of a constructive review, rather than just plain negative. I feel perhaps I wasn't the right audience for this book, and hopefully this review will explain why
Firstly this story is labeled as a New Adult book, however I would strongly disagree and say it reads more like a Young Adult novel. The characters may be aged 18-21, but they certainly don't act like it. I don't think a book has to have sex or swearing to to be classified as NA, I do however feel that the characters and issues they face need to be more mature than YA stories, and that is why I feel this book is NOT NA.
Although Kelli is wealthier than Richy Rich she still runs her own little side business as a Friday Night Alibi - covering for all her other wealthy friends so they can go out and have a fun Friday Night. I found this to be quite a unique storyline. There are many questions I had for her motivations - she certainly didn't need the money and she had a best friend who wanted her to go out to parties or the movies, so why did she continue to be the Alibi and sit at home on a Friday night. It soon became obvious that she liked being needed, and that is the strongest part of this story.
Kel is 18 and has just graduated from high school, but to be honest, she acts more like a 13 yr old girl. She refers to breasts as 'boobies' and uses phrases like 'naughty bits, 'his under area', and quite often 'blows raspberries' at people when she's annoyed. Her actions where very juvenile and quite selfish at times. For example, when she crawls on the floor at the bowling ally and gets her $400 jeans dirty, she immediately gets upset and throws them and her expensive shirt & shoes in the bin the minute she gets home - could she not just have washed them or perhaps given them to a second hand store?! I thought perhaps by the end of the book she would have grown as a character, but unfortunately she pretty much stays the same.
Chase, well there's not much to say about him, basically because there is very little we really know about him. Early on we know that he wears a lot of black and never really mentions his family. After Kel stalks his Facebook page she see's heaps of pictures of him with a young boy - the photos only span 1 year and then…nothing. Now although we do find out what all this means, I felt like this storyline was very under developed and as a result I don't think we got to know Chase as well as we could have.
The romance was sweet with Chase appearing to be the typical hot boy player and Kel being the preppy good girl. But Chase works very hard to prove to Kel that he's not a player and in fact only has eyes for her. I really liked the way they played pranks and teased each other at the beginning, and how it slowly developed into something more.
Sadly I wasn't a fan of the writing style, I felt like the author tried too hard to use 'adolescent' language, but it just came off as very immature. Words and phrases like, 'boogers', 'deets' 'convo', 'yuckville', 'sucktacular' and 'sup', made college age character appear like they were 13 year olds. There was also a lot a repetition of phrases, such as the 'popcorny' feelings Kel got around Chase. It was cute at first, but got old quickly.
For me, the great thing about NA books is that you get a little more maturity than YA - not just from characters, but also the storyline and issues addressed - it's not just a matter of adding a sex scene and some swearing. So labelling this as a 'clean' NA book just doesn't fit for me. I feel like this book would be much more successful if it where marketed as a YA book. Even though this book was a little to immature for me, I still think many teenage girls will love this light and fluffy romance.
Sexuality: mild / kissing and minor touching
Drugs & alcohol: none