Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Review: Date With A Rockstar by Sarah Gagnon

Book Blurb:

Only one girl will win the cash prize...and a chance at love with Jeremy Bane.

Monet isn't just another lust-struck teenager trying to win the heart of Rock God Jeremy Bane--she needs the prize money from his new reality show to cure her illness. Monet has Fluxem, a contagious disease that’s spread through saliva. It's completely curable if you have enough money, which she and her single mother don’t. Now that she's on the show, Monet has to work harder to keep her Fluxem hidden. She only has to keep the secret long enough to woo Jeremy Bane so he picks her as the winner. She doesn’t even care about the love part; the prize alone will change her life.

But the real Jeremy Bane is nothing like she imagined. Monet finds herself fighting against feelings that make her want to give in to her attraction and Jeremy’s attempts for a kiss. The further she goes in the competition, the more impossible it becomes to resist him--and when the producers turn the tables and start digging up dirt on the contestants, Monet fears her secret will be revealed before she's ready and ruin everything.

The only way to win Jeremy's heart is to tell him the truth, but confessing her disease could cost her the competition, the prize money, and him

My Review:

3 Out Of 5 Stars

Genre: Dystopian, Teen--

Monet was infected with Fluxem 2 years ago while being attacked by some girls at her school. Fluxem, which is highly contagious, is considered a poor disease, since those who have little money end up suffering and dying from it, where the rich can get the expensive treatment and be cured. Monet falls into the poor category and she and her mother have been working hard to save the money needed for a cure before the symptoms show up. When her favorite musician holds a contest to win a date with him as well as earn prize money, Monet jumps at the opportunity. She is desperate for the money to buy the cure, and a bonus would be to meet the artist Jeremy Bane who is listed as the most attractive man in the world.

So this was an odd/interesting read for me. I will admit that when I read the synopsis I must have skimmed over the details that this takes place 50ish years in the future and society is over run with destruction and disease, as well as massive amounts of government regulation- so basically this is a dystopian setting. Yeah, I had no idea. I thought I would be reading a fun teen version of the tv show the Bachelor. Instead it felt like The Bachelor (celebrity version, and not teen at all minus the fact Monet is only 17) meets the gritty depressing edge of the book E by Kate Wrath (which for those who have not read it, it was pretty much the most gruesome tragic dystopian book I have personally ever read). So to be frank, this was a strange combination. That being said, I did not hate the book, instead I found it to be intriguing if at times awkward.

Monet is this incredibly desperate girl. As it is right now, her future looks bleak with the looming doom of Fluxem to slowly kill her unless she can gather the money in time. Actually now that I think about it, based on the setting and her circumstances, life looks pretty bleak for Monet regardless of the disease, but whatever. It kinda seems like if it isn't one thing that kills you, there is another right around the corner waiting to do so. I understand her desperation to win the competition, regardless of her less than noble need to use Jeremy to get the prize money. She really is out of options. Overall though she was a decent human being who tried to do the right thing, even when faced with tough offers and choices. Also, battling the Fluxem sores and terror of spreading would make anyone anxious, yet she stayed calm.

To me, it felt like Jeremy Bane was more of an ideal than an actual person. The way he acted was so perfect and at times scripted to get the ultimate response from people, he seemed unreal. Sure he did some nice things for people, had causes he felt strongly towards, and wanted to fight for the underdog, but still...something felt missing to me. I kept waiting for Monet to realize that she and Derek (who was a very real, what you see is what you get person) were perfect for each other, they had a spark (maybe I imagined it, but whatever) and they had similar backgrounds, more in common and spent time together just being themselves. I would have loved this book if Monet had won Derek's heart instead.

I was really confused at Monet's participation in the illegal metal art group. Ok, I was confused by lots of things, but the issue that metal is illegal and "reclaimed" yet she works for a society that makes jewelry for the rich, you know to "fight the power" was off to me. Fight the government by making pretty things for the wealthy who don't suffer and have everything they need? Sure, whatever. The world building was at times engaging at at other times conflicting. I think I may have liked the book better if it was either a survival/dystopian set in this world, or a modern day competition with a sick girl needing treatment for like cancer or something else recognizable for today. Together, hmm.

I would read more by this author in the future because she has unique idea and has a way of making the story flow. Her characters (most of them) felt like real people and her descriptions were so detailed I could vividly see the world she built. I would like to read something else by her set in this sad future.

I received this title from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

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