“Meet Jenna Jonsson and Sadie Laine: two gorgeous, glamorous twenty-somethings fighting to make it to the top of their chosen professions. Beautiful and talented, Jenna is an international pop star, determined to take her career to the next level. And when a chance meeting leads to an opportunity for Jenna to work with world-famous rock band Phoenix, Jenna is quick to agree – although her decision is somewhat influenced by Nick Taylor, the drummer with Phoenix and the most gorgeous man Jenna has ever met. Meanwhile, Sadie is a struggling dancer and a childhood rival of Jenna’s. Ambitious and passionate, she is determined to fulfil her dreams. And a move to Las Vegas yields an unmissable career opportunity and a chance at true love. Jenna and Sadie’s lives are about to collide but will sparks fly? Or will they be able to put the past behind them?”
There is nothing ‘young adult’ about the chick-lit novel, Idol by Carrie Duffy. At the age of twenty three, the main characters Jenna and Sadie, are far too old, and the issues they deal with all reside in the realm of the grown-ups. If grown-ups were all super limber, hot, successful, sexy and hung out with rock groups.
But of course, being ‘realistic’ isn’t the defining marker of a young adult novel; we wouldn’t all be nuts about Harry Potter if it was. However, there has to be content or themes that young adults can relate to, something they can learn from, in an age appropriate manner. Now, I don’t want to sound like a tired old prune, but this book ain’t that. The sex scenes are plentiful and graphic, and the swearing is of the gratuitous and prolific variety.
Rather than whinge about whether this book is technically a YA novel, how ‘bout I actually review Idol? Jenna is an international pop sensation who, upon returning to the scene following a messy break up, has the chance to work with one of the best rock bands in the world. This band also happen to have the sexiest drummer alive – Nick Taylor. Meanwhile, Sadie is a dancer still trying to make her way in show business, ruing the day her big break was stolen from her by Jenna. Both girls are fighting to succeed in a cutthroat world full of people who will use and abuse them, given the chance. We get to know Jenna and Sadie through the trials and triumphs of their separate lives, until they are brought together to fight a common enemy; a man who has taken something from them both.
Idol is easy to read. The clichés and trite descriptions make it a breeze to get through. The characters are all impossibly good-looking, talented, driven, sexy and sensitive, but not particularly smart. There are acres of tanned and toned flesh, bright white smiles, and bling.
If you have a spare couple of hours, Idol is the diversion for you. It is fairy floss – pink, light, fluffy, but without nutritional value. It’s a beach read. One thing I will say, you shouldn’t find this book on the shelf at your school library.
Publication Date: August 2011
Challenge: Debut Author
Teaser Quote: Her skin was tanned and flawless, her incredible body encased in shimmering Roberto Cavalli, cut high on the thigh and slashed heart-stoppingly low at the front to reveal her magnificent cleavage.