Sometimes I just have a bad attitude, so it is possible that you could read Paper or Plastic and think it is the best thing you’ve read in a long time. What you might enjoy about this book — the protagonist plays softball (hey, that’s big here), the romantic interest is sweet and self sacrificing, the cover is cute. Things you might not like — the protagonist and her “friends.”
Paper or Plastic by Vivi Barnes is a YA contemporary romance releasing February 3, 2015.
Lexi’s adventure in shoplifting ends with a required summer job at the Smartmart she stole from, but her punishment might end up being the best thing that ever happened to her. A summer of unexpected friendships and possible romance is exactly what Lexi needs to see things more clearly. While this book offers an interesting complication to the summer romance, it was otherwise rather predictable. Readers who are looking for a YA contemporary romance will not be disappointed, nor will they be surprised. The romantic interest will appeal to most readers. The protagonist, on the other hand, comes across as spoiled and self centered. Lexi gains empathy for others during her time at Smartmart, but never really has the
comeuppance growth I desired. The one minor character who is willing to call Lexi out for what she is disappears like smoke in the rush of the resolution (personally, I would rather have read the book from that girl’s perspective than Lexi’s). Ultimately it feels like Lexi got what Lexi wanted once again, at very little cost to herself. I was unclear what the ultimate message was, other than, “Hey, you need to be accepting of the working poor because they might actually be people, too!” Are my impoverished outsider roots showing? The language and situations are appropriate for grades nine and up.
I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.