- Pages: 368
- Release Date: September 6, 2016
- My rating: 4 stars
Aspiring reporter Piper Baird decides to write a scathing exposé on the overprivileged students at an elite Washington, DC, school, only for her life to change when she begins to fall for the story’s main subject, in this new realistic contemporary romance from Brodi Ashton, the author of the Everneath trilogy.
Raucous parties, privileged attitudes, underage drinking, and diplomatic immunity…it’s all part of student life on Embassy Row.
Piper Baird has always dreamed of becoming a journalist. So when she scores a scholarship to exclusive Chiswick Academy in Washington, DC, she knows it’s her big opportunity. Chiswick offers the country’s most competitive prize for teen journalists—the Bennington scholarship—and winning will ensure her acceptance to one of the best schools in the country.
Piper isn’t at Chiswick for two days before she witnesses the intense competition in the journalism program—and the extreme privilege of the young and wealthy elite who attend her school. And Piper knows access to these untouchable students just might give her the edge she’ll need to blow the lid off life at the school in a scathing and unforgettable exposé worthy of the Bennington.
The key to the whole story lies with Rafael Amador, the son of the Spanish ambassador—and the boy at the center of the most explosive secrets and scandals on Embassy Row. Rafael is big trouble—and when he drops into her bedroom window one night, asking for help, it’s Piper’s chance to get the full scoop. But as they spend time together, Piper discovers that despite his dark streak, Rafael is smart, kind, funny, and gorgeous—and she might have real feelings for him. How can she break the story of a lifetime if it could destroy the boy she just might love?
This is one of the CUTEST, funniest YA contemporaries I’ve read in so long!
Basic premise: Piper is a scholarship student who writes an expose on her rich peers in order to win an award & money she needs for college. She falls in love with the guy she’s writing the piece on, though, and everything could fall apart if she publishes it (ok, fine, lots more happens than that).
There’s too much I could gush about, so here’s a list of the best bits:
- it’s super well written
- hilarious main character
- maybe the best drunk dialogue ever
- every character was strong — even the parents
- Piper’s grandma is one of her best friends
- finally a realistic depiction of the lower middle class
- no instalove or annoying narration
- it was a realistic story… Piper’s goal is to be middle class
- the way Raf and Piper’s autistic brothers are written isn’t a stereotype and they’re so sweet with them
- she had actual serious motivation to write the expose on her classmates
- her family was on foodstamps and at risk of going bankrupt. The story wasn’t forced.
But seriously, I get so anxious in all of these books where the main character does something dumb that would totally ruin her relationship when it’s revealed… like just SAY SOMETHING. TALK before it’s gone on so long that it all blows up. And then even when things blow up, I hate how they usually still don’t properly explain. Aaaaaghh unnecessary stress (but I get it makes the story more suspenseful so whatever).
Anyways, this is one of the better contemporary books I’ve read in a long time! Absolutely loved it and almost gave it 5 stars except the end felt pretty abrupt and I wanted more resolution. But if you just take it as a light summer read, it’s really fun.
Thanks to the publisher for sending me a review copy!