1st January 2013, Templar
352 pages, Paperback
Themes: bonds of sisters, family life, teen romance trouble, feeling left out, being in a nightmare wedding, doing family things you'd rather skip, hot chocolate, tears, troubles at school, drifting away from friends, discovering new things about yourself, heaps of drama, oodles of humour
Summary from Templar
I'm Suzy Puttock (yes, Puttock with a P), fourteen years old and a total disaster magnet. My life's full of ups and downs. My loved-up big sister Amber's getting married and wants lime green bridesmaids' dresses. I'm not happy about that. But there's this hot new guy, Zach, just started at my school. I am happy about that. Only... I've had a boyfriend since forever, Danny. So now I'm all kinds of confused!
I knew from the first page that I'd love this book. Suzy's voice is highly readable - she made me laugh a lot and groan over the teen angst. I love how over the top and totally crazy Suzy's sister is - Suzy definitely went through a lot of trauma when it came to getting her bridesmaid dress! A lot of the time I could see the hardships that headed Suzy's way, and I hated being powerless to tell her to look out. I think a lot of readers will be able to relate to her - I'm certainly clumsy!
Surprisingly Suzy isn't the sole star of the show. I loved her sister Amber's slightly dippy self, as she is quick to believe things and totally devoted to her idol. Suzy's mum is very clever at one point by diverting Amber's strange tastes for the wedding by saying that Amber's idol actually prefers things another way, not the way Amber originally thought her idol liked things. (Apologies for grammar I'm writing this while tired). I adore the hyperactive Millie, who is brimming with energy & enthusiasm, as well as being very charming. I could see her dilemmas which tested Suzy throughout the book. The other funny character is Suzy's prankster sister, who is talented in mischief & mayhem. This 8/10 read is light and funny while dealing with issues teens come across.
You can find out more on Karen's website.
For more family drama and mayhem with an entertaining lead role check out the Dork Diaries series (filled with funny illustrations) by Rachel Rennee Russell which includes Dork Diaries: Skating Sensation (the first book I read but not the first in the series)