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Saturday, April 17, 2010

Review: Swoon at Your Own Risk by Sydney Salter


Title: Swoon at Your Own Risk
Author: Sydney Salter
Publisher: Graphia
Pages: 368
Genre: YA
Keywords: Friendship, Dating, Love, Identity
Description (from GoodReads):
It’s the summer before senior year and Polly Martin has sworn off boys. Who needs the hurt and confusion? Five recent breakups have left her with an unnatural knowledge of NASCAR, the ultimate hiker’s outfit, a student council position, the sixth highest score on the Donkey Kong machine at the mall, and a summer job at Wild Waves with ex #2 Sawyer Holmes.

Success seems a sure thing when Polly’s grandmother, the syndicated advice columnist, Miss Swoon, moves in for the summer. Polly almost doesn’t mind sharing a room with her little sister, Grace. Think of all the great advice she’ll get!
Everything is going according to plan except... Miss Swoon turns out to be a man-crazy septuagenarian! And then there’s Xander Cooper. If only he wouldn’t keep showing up at Wild Waves with his adorable cousins every afternoon — and what is he writing in that little notebook?
No advice column in the world can prepare Polly for the lessons she learns when she goes on a group camping trip (with three too many ex-boyfriends). Polly is forced to see people for who they are — a blend of good and bad qualities that can’t be reduced to a list or a snappy answer in a Miss Swoon column.
 
SWOON AT YOUR OWN RISK is a perfect warm weather read, filled with cute boys and a feisty heroine.

I wasn't sure if I would really connect with or like Polly, but I was a bit attached to her by the end of the novel. She was spunky, sarcastic, and witty! She begins the novel confused and prickly, but she really grows throughout the novel. She reminds me, in ways, of Veronica Mars: tough as nails, but really just a marshmallow on the inside.

I'm all for fluffy beach reads, so characterizing Swoon as such wouldn't really be insulting in my mind, but I must say that this novel is on a higher level than most beach reads. It has the cute boys and predictable love story, but Polly has more depth than many female leads in fluffy novels. The fact that Polly's main issue was  the fear of being without at boyfriend and that she was constantly adopting the hobby of her current beau was extremely realistic - which made it even funnier and Polly all the more easy to relate to.

And oh my gosh: Xander. He was so unbelievably adorable. It was definitely obvious from the beginning of the novel that Xander is the perfect guy for Polly but in her confused and boy phobic state there would be a bit of a journey to her realization of this fact. I loved the tension and buildup to this point. Xander definitely joins the ranks of my favorite book boys! (Yay!)

I will definitely be reading MY BIG NOSE AND OTHER NATURAL DISASTERS, Salter's debut novel, sometime soon! I think I've found a new author to add to my favorites.

Grade: A+

Cover Comments:
I think that the cover is really cute; I like that the girl is cautiously testing the water. I don't really like the guy in the background though.... It just looks awkward to me. I don't know what would be better there, but it doesn't mesh for me.

33 comments:

  1. I loved this book!! Didn't thought it was going to be soo good, but Polly and Xander are cute :)

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  2. I like light, beachy reads too! I really want to read this one this summer! Great review!

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  3. I am going to read this one for a Book Tour, look forward to something different. I have never noticed the guy in the background, weird.

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  4. Wow wonderful review! It definitely sounds like my type of book. I read My Big Nose and Other Natural Disasters by her and really liked it :)

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  5. Aw! I love the sound of Xander! And I love how you describe Polly, tough as nails but like a marshmallow inside.

    Thank you for the nice review!

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  6. Wow I never noticed the guy in the background, and it really does look awkward. :\ I think it could just have been left blank.
    This looks like a fun read! :)

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  7. I love summer fluffy beach reads so this sounds great for me!
    I agree with your opinion on the cover. The guy in the backround is off. Is like two different covers mixed together.

    Great review! ;)

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  8. Great review! This looks like a fun summer read. I hadn't heard about it before this so thanks for posting your review :)

    -Lauren (bookaholic117)

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  9. It caught my attention, I want to read it now!

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  10. I really want to read this book! Glad you liked this book, great review. I like the cover too but the guy does look creepy.

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  11. I haven't read this one yet but it sounds good! Thanks for the review.

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  12. Swoon sounds a bit fluffy for me but I do love the sound of her grandmother.

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  13. I agree with you about the cover, I like the girl but the boy looks out of place. I actually thought he was a dolphin/other form of sea creature at first! The book itself sounds like a good summer read, thanks for the great review.

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  14. Its been a long time since I read something just for fun. This books seems interesting..I would like to read it.

    mishamary@gmail.com

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  15. sounds like an interesting read seeing that I do prefer spunkier and wittier female characters.

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  16. Great review! I really like these summer histories, they're really nice. I agree wuth the cover, it's cute but that boy is kind of weird LOL hahaha

    martina_comes(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  17. I do agree with you about the cover-so cute!
    And I so want to read this book now,especially after your review! Spunkier female protagonists with many layers to their characters are so appealing!

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  18. cute book! great review. I can't wait to get my hands on this.

    angela z

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  19. Great review! I've been looking for a summer/beach read now that summer is finally here and this book seems perfect!

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  20. I will start reading it as soon as i can!

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  21. I love that you love this book since I have it on my to read! I really have to go and pick this one up!

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  22. I have seen this book around and it sounds like just what I need to take out on the boat with me this summer. Great review.

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  23. That sounded really cute and funny. The situation of having to go camping with three of her exes? Lol. This was a really good review and has made me really want to read the book.

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  24. This sounds like an interesting book and I love how you described Polly! YA needs sarcastic, cool girls like her x)
    Thanks for the review!

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  25. I love it that a beach read can surprise you with depth! Those are the best kinds of books!

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  26. Hah I agree completely with what you said abut the cover. I think it's gorgeous but I don't really like that awkward guy swimming in the back.

    And wow this one got an amazing review! I loved how you summed up her character.

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  27. Great review! ^^ This book sounds interesting, a fun, feel-good story perfect for the summer. Thanks for sharing this! c:

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  28. Fantastic review! I love my heroines sarcastic and witty, though I usually read adult books, I'm realyl curious to see how I'll like a YA heroine :-)

    Don't you just love those kind of books which scream summer read? Even the cover of this one makes you feel the sunshine :-D

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  29. You had me at "spunky, sarcastic, and witty" heroine. Love that kind. They're usually so much fun to read!;)

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  30. This sounds like a fun and enjoyable book!

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

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  31. I never noticed the guy in the background, but now that I'm aware it is kinda akward. Back to the inside of the book, it sounds like a nice, fun read!

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  32. I can't wait to read this book it looks so good!

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