Jersey Angel by Beth Ann Bauman
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published May 8th 2012 by Random House Children’s Books
It’s the summer before senior year and the alluring Angel is ready to have fun. She’s not like her best friend, Inggy, who has a steady boyfriend, good grades, and college plans. Angel isn’t sure what she wants to do yet, but she has confidence and experience beyond her years. Still, her summer doesn’t start out as planned. Her good friend Joey doesn’t want to fool around anymore, he wants to be her boyfriend, while Angel doesn’t want to be tied down. As Joey pulls away, and Inggy tours colleges, Angel finds herself spending more time with Inggy’s boyfriend, Cork. With its cast of vivid and memorable characters, this tale from the Jersey shore is sure to make some waves.
My thoughts: Well. I’ll say this: Angel is not your typical young adult protagonist! She is saucy and opinionated and not afraid to do what it takes to get what she wants. She likes sex and goes after it when and where she feels like it, no matter who the boy may be (or may be dating). So now not only have I described the main character, I have also just described the plot. Not kidding.
Seriously, there was very little plot to speak of. The novel simply covers Angel’s summer. There was no big mystery (other than how many people she’d sleep with before the end of the book), drama or climax (ha, I made a pun). The book just coasted along, following Angel’s days as she dealt with her not-as-horny-as-her ex, her best friend, her best friend’s boyfriend and various other characters that popped up occasionally.
Her mother was a hippie with extremely lax parenting ideals (Angel lived in her own house during the winters). Her best friend was wispy in both looks and personality. Her “bed” buddy was a pathetic hanger-on. Her best friend’s boyfriend was an asshat. Her other friend was a drunken waste case. This book was just full of mostly one dimensional characters with no real redeeming qualities. I never grew to care for any of them, though I liked how Angel matured near the end of the book.
The dialogue was peppered with sex talk, cussing and lots of Jersey slang, though none of it was hard to get. Everyone talked like real people, nothing fake or stilted. There was a lot of sex in this book, but I wouldn’t call any of it hot, romantic or even very sweet.
The cover is okay. It’s definitely appropriate for the attitude of the book, very light and free. I’m just not a big fan of the bikini covered butt. I wouldn’t really want to read it in public.