Frankie Vega is angry. Just ask the guy whose nose she broke. Or the cop investigating the burglary she witnessed, or her cheating ex-boyfriend or her aunt who’s tired of giving second chances…When a kid shows up claiming to be Frankie’s half-brother, it opens the door to a past she doesn’t want to remember. And when that kid goes missing, the only person willing to help is a boy with stupidly blue eyes … and secrets of his own. Frankie’s search for the truth might change her life, or cost her everything.
If you read my previous post on the #YASquad Event you’ll already know why I picked up a copy of Frankie at the event. It was all due to listening to the author, Shivaun Plozza, talk about her book and her characters.
I’m often drawn to books with strong characterisation, books that are character driven and Frankie is no exception. Frankie is a kick ass, take no prisoners kind of girl with a snarky mouth to boot. She’s got some serious troubles and most of the time she has a, “look at all the f***’s I give” attitude. And I love it. I love that she is unapologetically exactly who she is, regardless of how people at school see her or of how her family wants her to act.
The story centres around Frankie finding out she has a half-brother she’s never heard of and just when she’s finally getting to know him, he disappears. At its core, you could say this book is a mystery, but it’s more than that. It’s about a girl struggling to deal with her past and her twisted relationship with her mother, all while trying to hold onto the one thing she thinks can help her deal with all that. The unfolding mystery kept me reading well past 3am because I knew I wouldn’t get any sleep until I found out what happened.
But it was also the budding romance between Frankie and Nate that had me hooked, it’s not as big a part of the story as Frankie’s search for her brother but there’s enough there to really feel for both characters as they muck up expressing their feelings and say all the wrong things. It was heart-wrenching at times but it was realistic. It also didn’t drown out the important search at the centre of Frankie, rather added another layer to this already dynamic and flawed character
Most importantly this story made me feel something; I laughed, I cringed, I gasped and I cried. I went through an entire rollercoaster of emotion reading this book, and I think that’s why I loved it so much. There’s nothing worse than an exceptionally well-written book with a great plot that doesn’t make you feel anything.
And as you all know I’m a fangirl at heart and I need the feels.
GIVE ME ALL THE FEELS PEOPLE!
If you love a bit of contemporary YA, Frankie is a must read for you. It has real, interesting characters and a writing style that equally easy to read and captivating at the same time.
5 stars out of 5