Monday, August 10, 2015

'89 Walls | Katie Pierson


College is not in the cards for Seth. He spends his minimum wage on groceries and fakes happiness to distract his mom from the MS they both know will kill her. It’s agony to carry around a frayed love note for a girl who’s both out of his league and beneath his dignity.  

Quinn’s finishing high school on top. But that cynical, liberal guy in her social studies class makes her doubt her old assumptions. Challenging the rules now, though, would a) squander her last summer at home, b) antagonize her conservative dad, and c) make her a hypocrite. 

Seth and Quinn’s passionate new romance takes them both by surprise. They keep it a secret: it’s too early to make plans and too late not to care. But it’s 1989. As politics suddenly get personal, they find themselves fighting bare-fisted for their beliefs—and each other—in the clear light of day.

+5 Cover Design

I have to admit, this cover really caught my eye. The combination of the color contrast, the pictures and the font overall is very striking. I can see how it relates to the story without it being too obvious or literal. It's a fantastic cover. 

+3 Writing Style

It was obvious that the writer had put in a lot of research into shaping the political aspects of the book. But I'm not much of a political person, so those parts didn't necessarily attract me. Generally I would say that the writing was average, nothing great but nothing horrible. The reader could easily follow along with the events of the book and the characters. 

+2 Plot Development

This book wasn't very long, maybe two hundred pages or so, but there was a lot crammed into it. There were so many directions this book could have gone in, but rather than picking one issue.

+2 Character Relationships

Character relationships were my biggest problem throughout this book. The relationships seemed rushed and there seemed to be no conflict. Going into this book, I really thought it would be something like Lauren Myracle's The Infinite Moment of Us, which I loved. Unfortunately the relationships in '89 Walls didn't seem as real as they could have been. 

+2 Character Development

While there was some development of characters throughout the book, I really didn't feel like they grew all that much. Any changes in character were incited by specific events, but I don't feel like anyone really matured or changed. 

+2 Likability of Protagonist

Honestly, I didn't really like either of the protagonists. They were both stubborn and close-minded, not at all open to understanding other people's circumstances. I couldn't relate to any of the characters and most of their behaviors were frustrating and confusing. 

+3 Necessity of Minor Characters

There were one or two characters that could have been considered crucial, but I think even if all the minor characters were removed, this book could have still existed. We didn't see any complex relationships. The minor characters would pop in every now and then to say something to further the plot and then disappear. 

+4 Setting Description

I had no real problems with the setting. I could easily understand the locations and picture them in my mind. 

+2 Dialogue

The dialogue between the characters were as rushed as their relationships were. The only dialogue with substance was the political arguments. But in regards to the relationship, everything said was underwhelmingly simple. 

+1 Predictability

This book was extremely predictable. The events unfolded exactly as I thought they would. The author attempted to foreshadow certain ending, but it wasn't as subtle as it could have been.

+50 Finished

Final Total: 76; C

I had such different expectations going into this book. Essentially I didn't expect so much politics. If I were more of a political person I think would have enjoyed this a lot more, but honestly I was in it mostly for the romance and relationships, which proved to be underwhelming. I think this is definitely a good political read, but not as great if you're looking for a light, cute contemporary novel.